2015 Domaine Samuel Billaud "Grand Terroir" Chablis

SKU #1302810 89-91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2015 Chablis Les Grandes Terroirs is a blend of vines from lieux-dits Les Parges, Chapelot and Les Cartes (which I also tasted separately). It has a clean and mineral-driven bouquet, perhaps more akin to a 2014 than a 2015. The palate is clean and fresh with a hint of lychee (coming from Les Cartes), counterbalanced by crisp acidity from Chapelot and a fine, minerally finish that already displays fine tension and salinity. Worth looking out for this once released next year. There’s a new guy in town. That guy in Samuel Billaud and more accurately, he is returning to the town of Chablis after being embroiled in a family dispute with his uncle Bernard Billaud, when he sold the domaine to Faiveley (still under the Domaine Billaud-Simon name, incidentally). As a consequence, there was an interregnum whereby Samuel occupied a temporary facility outside Chablis in the village of La Chapelle-Vaupelteigne. Since I have been visiting Samuel, it was clear that he was itching to lay foundations more permanently and as luck would have it, he was able to move into the building previously occupied by Domaine Moreau-Naudet--located in the heart of the village, just down from Domaine Droin.  (8/2016)

88-90 points Vinous

 (a blend of three components: 75-year-old vines in Les Quarts, on white clay and calcaire soil in front of Vaillons; 25-year-old vines in Bas de Chapelot, harvested on September 2 and 3 because of hail; and vines in Les Pargues, which was slightly less affected by hail in 2015 but completely destroyed this spring; done entirely in stainless steel): Pale yellow. Very ripe peach and apricot aromas dominate the nose. Ripe and dense, showing good intensity and salty extract. Interestingly, this approximation of the final blend comes across as less exotic than one or two of its components, and more saline and smooth on the finish.  (7/2016)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

 An overtly ripe but reasonably fresh array is composed by cool apple, pear, iodine and sea breeze scents. There is good energy and solid delineation to the delicious and very generous middle weight flavors that display evident salinity on the rich and nicely persistent finale that offers good if not truly special depth and length.  (10/2017)

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Price: $25.99
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- It's hard to believe that up until about 30 years ago, this extremely popular varietal hid behind the veil of geographical names like Chablis and Puligny-Montrachet. Now grown all over the world and bottled by its varietal name, Chardonnay has achieved a level of branding unlike any other wine. Surprisingly, though, what you get when you buy Chardonnay can differ greatly from country to country and even within one country, depending on the climate where it's grown and how it is vinified and aged. From fresh, crisp and minerally with apple and lemon notes to rich and buttery with tropical fruit overtones, Chardonnay runs the gamut. In France's Burgundy, Chardonnay is the source of the prized wines of Chablis, Corton-Charlemagne, Mâcon, Meursault and Montrachet. It also the foundation of exceptional Champagne, where it is blended with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier or vinified on its own into Blanc de Blancs. It is also extremely popular in California, and is gaining popularity in Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Spain and South Africa.


- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them.


- The region north of the Cote d'Or, famous for its steely dry white wines made from Chardonnay. There are 7 Grands Crus vineyards, and numerous Premier Crus. Unfortunately, the name has been borrowed and badly abused by producers of inferior white wines in the US as well as in Australia. True French Chablis is a delicate, stony, crisp Chardonnay, bearing no resemblance to the anonymous plonk so labeled here.