2016 Pommier Chablis Premier Cru Troesmes
This year, for the first time in seven years of selling Isabelle and Denis Pommier’s Chablis, I visited the winery.
This is no mega-glitz gilded chateau of a winery, nor a homestead filled with gorgeous artwork around the tasting room. It is simply a workspace for making wine, and then a cellar for aging it. As cheerful Isabelle explained to me – “we [Isabelle and her husband Denis] wanted to make wine and it just happened. It wasn’t one of us bringing the other in. That was 28 years ago and my, has time gone by.”
They started with one hectare, and when their son was born, moved the winery and vineyards to organic. They aren’t large, but the winery has grown. While they have no grands crus (land is very expensive) they do have just a couple of premiers crus, and I was able to strike a deal on one of them.
I am guessing that Troesmes is probably not familiar to even the Chablis fanatics out there. With good reason. In Chablis, many, if not most, of the climats can be subdivided and list a separate name if a domaine chooses too. Chablis is 75% co-operative wine, so you don’t often see these sub-divisions.
Here, Troesmes is a sub-climat of Beauroy, a premier cru just on the northwest corner of the village of Chablis. The reason they use the Troesmes name instead of the more common Beauroy is that Troesmes has a very special soil not present in the rest of Beauroy, which to Isabelle makes all the difference in the wine. What is the name and features of that soil type? I didn’t quite catch it – she was speaking French-English and I was hearing English-French! We were trying, but frankly—and what does it matter—the wine is outstanding:
I think the 2016 Troesmes embodies the best qualities of Chablis today. It opens with a beautiful purity of high-toned citrus – lemon, verbena and neroli but with a pure, crisp sensation of fresh sparkling mineral water. The palate is vivacious and nervy, with a gorgeous freshness. At four years old, it is just edging into prime-time drinking with a palate that has a deep resonance of intensity while still glistening in the morning dew. I am certainly going to drink my stash now, but I am also certain it will age for many more years.
As the winery is small, and this wine is a back-vintage, we received a small allocation. Get yours right now, because tomorrow it will be gone.