The epitome of Premier Cru Chablis: vivid and intense, with excellent mineral flavors and a long finish. A wine for keeping.
The Maison & Domaine of Simonnet-Febvre were founded in 1840 by Jean Febvre, a barrel maker by trade from the town of Montbard. In the early days, the house was known for its sparkling Chardonnays from Chablis, known today as Crémants de Bourgogne. Over the years, the Febvres acquired holdings in some of the greatest terroirs in Chablis. Today, the domaine comprises approximately 9 acres, crowned by a 2/3 acre plot in the Grand Cru vineyard of Les Preuses, with 3.5 acres of 1er Cru Mont de Milieu and 4.7 acres of communal Chablis vineyards. In 2003, Simonnet-Febvre was acquired by Maison Louis Latour. Since its purchase, the Latours have completely renovated the winemaking facilities, installing new stainless steel tanks and pneumatic presses. The vineyards have been reworked with the same sustainable vineyard practices utilized in Latour’s 125 acre domain in the Côte d’Or. Maison Louis Latour also hired a talented new winemaker, Jean-Philippe Archambaud.
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Chablis got a bad rap when its name was plastered on large jug wines in the 1980's and 90's. Luckily, the wine in those jugs has nothing in common with the actual region. Wines produced in Chablis are some of the most unique in the world. Typical descriptors of a classic Chablis include a greenish tinge on the wine, minerality and crisp acidity balanced by a round mouthfeel. Chablis is a perfect match to any fish or shellfish dish.
The northernmost region of Burgundy, Chablis' location is closer to Champagne than its Burgundian neighbor, Cote d'Or. This northern proximity gives Chablis a cool, continental climate. The soil is a limestone base, and in the best vineyard sites that limestone is covered with Kimmeridgian clay, a material that is very high in marine fossils. The climate, paired with these distinctive soils, makes the area particularly suited for Chardonnay - the almost exclusive white grape of the area.
Those who claim not to like Chardonnay will be pleasantly surprised by the uniqueness of Chablis. The winemakers of the region almost always stick to stainless steel for fermentation, and many use no oak at all. If oak-aged, the wine will only be in large French oak barrels, which give the wines flavors that are a far cry from your typical California Chardonnay.
About France - Other regions
When it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and
Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
Most wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.