Ladoix, Burgundy, France
Domaine Chevalier was established in 1850 by Émile Dubois. Émile’s daughter Marcelle and his son-in-law Émile Chevalier inherited the estate after the First World War. Today, Claude Chevalier, the grandson of Émile, heads up the domaine, with his two daughters Julie and Chloé working alongside him. Chloé is now responsible for the winemaking although Claude is still very much present at the domaine. The domaine totals 15 hectares, lying on south-easterly facing chalky-clay soils, and is situated in Ladoix, right on the doorstep of Aloxe-Corton, in the north of the Côte de Beaune.
The whites are fruit-forward with the lifted fragrance that typifies great Burgundy, at relatively modest prices. The oak is nicely balanced, with the acidity lively enough to lift the nutty fruit on the finish. The whites are fermented in barrel, of which 25% are new, for both the Villages and Premier Cru wines. Racking is carried out in accordance with the lunar calendar because the low atmospheric pressure helps to settle the lees. Domaine Chevalier has less than one hectare of Premier Cru ‘Les Gréchons’, from which they produce particularly fine Chardonnay from 25-year-old vines – the more southerly exposure of this Cru giving extra weight and flavour to the wine. Winemaker Chloé also makes fantastic red wines, with a Ladoix Rouge fermented in vat and aged in old oak barrels for 12 months, giving lovely soft perfumes and wonderful depth of flavour. The Aloxe-Corton 1er Cru ‘Les Valozières’ is one of the most highly regarded Premier Cru vineyard sites in Aloxe-Corton, located at the base of the Corton Grand Cru hill. This wine has concentrated notes of bramble and dark cherry fruit and is well-balanced with soft, ripe tannins and sweet spice flavours, which linger on the finish.