Named after the town of the same name and classified in 1938, the appellation is located north of the winegrowing region Burgundy in the so-called Basse-Bourgogne in the Yonne. Southwest of it lies the area Saint-Bris which was counted before the Appellationsregelung. Chablis is by the Morvan Mountains of the Côte d'Or separated and is the Champagne much closer than the rest of Burgundy areas. Already the Romans operated here in the 2nd century viticulture and later the monastic orders took over the church the cultivation. Special merits acquired thereby the Cistercian Abbey Pontigny, whose monks allegedly the Chardonnay introduced here. It was once the largest wine-growing area, with 40,000 hectares surrounding the city of Auxerre France, Through sales difficulties and through the phylloxera caused damage was a conversion to other agricultural products.
In addition, the area was and is extremely through hail and into the month of May frost endangered, therefore, whole crops were destroyed again and again. All this contributed to the fact that in the mid-1950s only 500 acres were planted. From the beginning of the 1960s, attempts were made to successfully combat the risk of frost with various measures. Very effective is the installation of oil-fired stoves in the vine rows, whose heat is distributed with windmills in the vineyard. In addition, the vines sprayed with water, whereupon the resulting ice film a protective cover around the young shoots forms. Today there are again about 4,500 hectares of vineyards in Chablis and another 19 communities.
The pale yellow wine with a greenish tinge is varietal from the grape variety Chardonnay (here it is called Beaunoise) dry expanded. He has a typical mineral Aroma after flint (French name "Goût de pierre a fusil") and tastes mild and fruity despite strong acidity, which is due to the prevailing clay and limestone soil. Traditionally, the wine matures in concrete cisterns or in steel tanks, but many manufacturers are increasingly pushing the expansion into oak. Most wines go through one today malolactic fermentation, A top wine from the Chablis has enormous storage potential to several decades.
The quality hierarchy corresponds to the four-level system of Burgundy classification :
Chablis Grand Cru: These are the wines from the seven top locations, all located on a slope north of the city of Chablis. These are the best known Blanchot (12 ha), Bougros (12 ha), Grenouilles , Les Clos (27 ha), Les Preuses (11 ha), Valmur (13 ha) and Vaudésir (14 ha). Although another vineyard called La Moutonne is not listed as a Grand Cru, it is allowed to use the protected name on the label because 2.3 hectares of it are in the two vineyards of Vaudésir and Les Preuses. A classification as a Grand Cru was considered once, but has not happened until today. The approximately 100 hectares of vineyards account for only 5% of Chablis production.
Premier Cru: These wines may carry either the name of one of the 40 individual layers or the name of a so-called layer group on the label. Mainly the second one is used, these are (in parenthesis the layers which may give the collective name): Côte de Jouan, Côte de Léchet, Côte de Vaubarousse, Beuaroy (Troesmes, Côte de Savant), Berdiot, Chaume de Talvat, Fourchame (Côte de Fontenay, L'Homme Mort, Vaulorent, Vaupulent), Les Fourneaux (Côte des Pres-Girots, Morein), Les Beauregard (Côte de Cuissy), Les Landes et Verjuts, Mont de Milieu, Montée de Tonnere (Chapelot, Côte de Bréchain, Pied d'Aloup), Montmains (Butteaux, Forets), Vaillons (Beugnons, Chatains, Les Epinottes, Les Lys, Mélinots, Roncières, Sécher), Vaucoupin, Vau de Vey (Vaux Ragons, Vau Ligneau and Vosgros (Vaugiraut) The total area is 750 hectares in 15 municipalities (not the municipality of Chablis itself) and provides about 30% of production.
Chablis: The AC covers a very large area with about 2,300 hectares of vineyards. It must not be listed on the label. These wines account for around 60% of production. In good years, this can be an excellent, classic Chablis.
Petit Chablis: These are the wines from the inferior soils and vineyards, most of which are in the AC Chablis. The vineyard area is 1,800 hectares, of which only 200 are currently used. There are efforts to change the somewhat verniedlichenden name or leave this class altogether.
Among the best-known producers with Grand-Cru and / or Premier Cru in the Appellation Chablis include Barat, Bichot (Domaine Long-Depaquit), Billaud-Simon, Pascal Bouchard, La Chablisienne, Michel Cobois, Jean Collet, Jean Dauvissat, René & Vincent Dauvissat, Jean Defaix, Jean-Paul Droin, Joseph Drouhin, Gérard Duplessis, Domaine Marcel Duplessis, William Fèvre Domaine de la Maladière, Château Grenouilles, Jean-Pierre Grossot, Michel Laroche, Domaine des Malandes, Domaine des Maronniers, Domaine de Meulière, J. Moreau & Fils, Sylvain Mosnier, Gilbert Picq, Domaine Pinson, Jean-Marie Ravenau, Guy Robin, Philippe Testut, Jean-Marie Raveneau, Château de Viviers, Robert Vocoret & Fils and Domaine Vocret.