Domaine Billaud-Simon is renowned for producing some of the best wines in Chablis, long recognised for their steely, mineral style. Domaine Billaud Simon owns 20 hectares of vineyards in some of the best areas in Chablis. Most of the domaine’s wines see no oak at all, apart from the Premier Cru Mont de Milieu which is 40% vinified in oak and the Grand Cru Les Blanchots, which is 100% vinified in oak.
The name of this climat – that can be spelt in several different ways – originates from its geographical location. It lies at the foot of the ‘Bougros’ hillside. The Serein river runs just a few metres from here and was often flooded in the past. For this reason, the pathway led
along ‘la pierreuse’, just before ‘boquereau’ and became ‘Bougros’ over time meaning ‘a narrow pathway next to the water’s edge’ (Bouque in old French means ‘narrowing’).
Total surface area: 12 ha 60
Soils: Clay-limestone with a higher clay content than the other Grand Crus
Exposure: Right bank. South – South/West
Grape variety: Chardonnay
Hand harvested in order to preserve the quality of the fruit. The grapes are sorted manually on a vibrating sorting table in order to retain only the most healthy fruit. The grapes are drained naturally before being pressed using a pneumatic press in order to gently extract the juices and conserve as much aroma as possible. Static cold settling of the musts for 12 to 24 hours in stainless steel vats in order to obtain a bright, clear juice. Alcoholic fermentation followed by malolactic fermentation, both natural, in stainless steel vats. 15 months in stainless steel vats with, if necessary, some time spent in French oak barrels in order to preserve freshness and minerality whilst bringing complexity and richness to the wine. The wine is racked twice before being bottled in the end of Autumn.
The winter of 2020 was surprisingly warm and dry. The growing cycle got off to a very early start with bud burst around the 26th March. Severe frosts in early April were a cause for concern, with temperatures around -7°C. Fortunately, the very low humidity levels helped to preserve the vines. After a second cold spell (known as the Ice Saints), flowering began around the 25th May. After a very hot and dry summer, the vines received much needed rain in early August (around 60mm), helping through to harvest.
Harvest took place between the 27th August and 6th September in glorious sunshine, and grapes were healthy and well-balanced. The pickers mainly worked in the mornings to ensure that the fruit was still cool when it arrived in the winery. Harvest started with Chablis Grand Cru ‘Blanchots’ followed by the other Grands Crus between the 1st and 4th September. The last parcel to be picked was Chablis ‘Tête d’Or’.
The wines are showing excellent alcohol-acidity balance and remarkable concentration, combining freshness and purity.
A remarkably rich Grand Cru. The nose reveals intense mineral notes combined with aromas of candied fruits. The palate is rich and unctuous with notes of gingerbread. The structure is both firm and round. Elegant finish with lingering saline notes.
Oysters, frog’s legs, skate wing in a creamy parsley sauce.
10°C to 12 °C
Vinous Media: 89-91 Points
Allen Meadows: 89-92 Points