On Sale: $49.94 (was: $59.94)*
Samuel Billaud’s boutique domaine in Chablis is an offshoot of the great Billaud-Simon, which is now owned by Faiveley, and we can think of few in Chablis making such high quality, well priced 1er crus. Over the past decade Billaud “has built one of the most impressive operations in Chablis” (Vinous), and his 1er crus are right at the sweet spot of price and quality. Billaud’s 2017 ‘Montmains’ is a “wonderfully complete and delicious Chablis” made in just the right style to balance out the vintage’s fresher, cool-toned qualities. It is an absolute winner for under fifty bucks, and you won’t find this one anywhere else!
Billaud struck out from the family domaine in 2009, and “already belongs on any list of Chablis' best” (Wine Advocate), which is no surprise as he was the winemaker for Billaud-Simon going back to 1985. With only 15% oak (all larger formats too), the 2017 Montmains is “a fine example of its terroir” (View From the Cellar), and it is sourced from 65+ year old vines. Cooler fermentation and aging on the lees also helped produce a Chablis that shows both textural richness and a surprising purity of fruit given the traditional style Billaud prefers. While many veteran winemakers would recoil at having to rebuild from square one Billaud seems to have thrived, though he is still quite small scale with only 4ha. Given his reputation and rapidly rising profile, this one is sure to move, so don’t linger long!
92 points, Vinous: "...forward, open-knit and very easy to enjoy. Passionfruit, mango, white flowers and mint all grace this silky, sumptuous 1er Cru from Samuel Billaud. Soft contours, forward fruit and the energy of the year all meld together in a wonderfully complete and delicious Chablis..."
91+ points, View from the Cellar: "The 2017 Montmains is a fine example of its terroir, offering up a complex bouquet of fresh lime, apple, straw, a lovely base of chalky soil tones and a very discreet touch of vanillin oak. On the palate the wine is crisp, full-bodied and nicely solid at the core, with fine focus and grip, bright acids and a long, complex and very well-balanced finish. A lovely Montmains."
91 points, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Open and expressive, Billaud's 2017 Chablis 1er Cru Montmains soars from the glass with a lively bouquet of beeswax, citrus fruit, green apple, mint and white flowers. On the palate, it's medium to full-bodied, satiny and giving, with ripe acids, a fleshy core and a saline finish."
*Offer publication date March 15, 2022. Pricing and availability subject to change.