I’ve had visitors over from the colonies, so I’ve been drinking a lot of French wine, with Chablis being a particular favourite. We’ve had some lovely wines, but as the dollar price is calculated, ‘sticker shock’ is evident. Chablis isn’t cheap chardonnay, but it’s often reasonable value if you really love the style.
We tried a Domaine du Colombier 2005 Petit Chablis, the idea being that Petit Chablis is usually cheaper than its straight Chablis neighbours. This one was even cheaper, it started life at £9.50, and was now £6.95 with a discount from the BBR Outlet because it’s ready to drink right now.
If we’d tried it as a random French chardonnay on an ordinary weeknight it would have stood up well. It has a lemony, minerally character, with medium body and alcohol. It’s at it’s best with food when its fruitiness comes through. Unfortunately this wasn’t just a random choice, we’ve been drinking the real deal, even with the odd Premier Cru thrown in.
It tasted cheaper, thinner, not as bold, not as balanced or integrated. It was a nice chardonnay, but at this price point there’s lots nicer from Burgundy, from France in general as well as the rest of the world. It was a false economy.