Christy Canterbury MW

Location: New York, NY

Master of Wine. Wine judge+public speaker. Journalist for Media+SOMM Journal+Civiltà del Bere+others. Short-listed for the 2014 Roederer Online Communicator of the Year Award. Incorrigible traveler!

Chablis from Spring 2014: The Best of Every Cellar Visited!

Rank Wine Rating Price
1 Caves Jean & Sébastien Dauvissat Chablis Pc les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes (2007)
Comments: There is nothing so exciting as walking into a cellar and being shown mostly older wines. I was shown a trio of 2007s - all brilliant - and this one enticed me the most. It was impressively cheese rind-y in its maturity yet it still managed some vaguely youthful fruit. It's easily got another five years to go. 93 pts
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2 Domaine Bernard Defaix Chablis Gc Vaudésir (2012)
Comments: "Enormous concentration" was one of my first notes for this wine. What is most impressive about this wine is not simply Its power but its balance. Suppleness and acidity give this powerhouse equilibrium. It smells of raw almonds, flowers and cantaloupes at this stage and is sure to develop magnificently. 95 pts
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3 Domaine Billaud-Simon Chablis Gc Vaudésir (2012)
Comments: Exotic and unctuous, this wine’s creamy texture is juxtaposed by startlingly bright acidity. Its finish is long and its flavors are intense, but there is so much stuffing here that what it needs most is time. Don’t pop that cork for at least two more years! 95 pts
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4 Domaine Christian Moreau Chablis Gc les Clos (2012)
Comments: Pineapple and tinned peaches combine with straw notes and chalky minerality to create a zinger of a wine. Zippy acidity and laser-like precision give this wine focus and ageability. It possesses a transparency of soil and grape that seems to reflect the open-mindedness of father and son winemakers Christian and Fabien Moreau. 94 pts
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5 Domaine Daniel Dampt Chablis Pc Côte de Léchet (2012)
Comments: It’s almost impossible not to notice this wine’s acidity before anything else. That’s not to say the wine is dominated by it, but it is certainly lead by this quality. Pungency of structure aside, its flavors can’t be considered anything other than classic and finessed. This is a fine example of why I fell for the wines of this family operation a long time ago. 92 pts
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6 Domaine Daniel-Etienne Defaix Chablis Pc Vaillons (2003)
Comments: I am always thrilled to see 2003s showing well. So many critics maligned the vintage in Europe yet the best producers made balanced wines that still manage edge and finesse. This wine has a vibrant yellow color, tons of freshness – it’s even crackling with acidity! – and a hint of structuring tannins on the finish. 93 pts
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7 Domaine Joseph Drouhin Chablis 'Vaillons' Premier Cru (2010)
Comments: Already beginning to show the cheesy, leesy side of evolution, this wine nonetheless has the voluptuously concentrated palate to go a good distance. Still, it’s near impossible to resist now. There’s no shortage of baked apples, sweet spice, flan, hazelnut and Palo Cortado Sherry flavors. 94 pts
Previously available for $29.36
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8 Domaine François Raveneau Chablis Gc les Clos (2013)
Comments: Call me easy-to-please, but I couldn’t resist the charm of this newborn, despite tasting many older wines in this cellar. It was open, forward, exotic and inviting. . Creamy and round with generous ripeness, tons of structure and an unrelenting finish, this wasn’t Chablis…it was Raveneau. (Note: this was a barrel sample.) 96 pts
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9 Domaine Gilbert Picq Chablis Pc Vosgros (2012)
Comments: This wine was my favorite of the visit, despite the fact it was a bit reduced. There was that AND the fact the bottle had been opened nine days before. The textured palate was fascinating to the point I didn’t note a single aroma or flavor. Precisely balanced, high acidity pulled the wine’s moderately textured feel into long finish. 94 pts
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10 Domaine Jean-Paul & Benoît Droin Chablis Gc les Clos (2012)
Comments: This wine juxtaposes opulently ripe pit fruits of white peach and apricot with delicate herbal notes and grapefruit zest. Its massive acidity and light tannins pull the sum of the parts into a feistily structured package. As in all of the wines of this cellar, there is so much refreshment that is is hard not to keep going back to the glass. 95 pts
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11 Domaine Laroche Chablis Gc la Réserve de l'Obédience (2011)
Comments: Only 3,000 bottles of this wine made from the domaine’s best parcels from Les Blanchots was produced. In fact, it is more likely it is only fractions of parcels, such is the precision of this house. The frank complexity leads to an impressively long finish with light tannins guiding the wine’s structure as much as its lovely freshness. 93 pts
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12 Domaine Louis Michel Chablis Gc les Clos (2012)
Comments: This wine hails from a mid-slope parcel towards the northern side of the appellation. Its most predominant character is its chiseled structure. Then, there’s the beautiful typicity of chalk, yellow plums and pithy grapefruit zest. It’s a shame to drink this young, yet it is showing well now. 95 pts
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13 Domaine Roland Lavantureux Chablis Gc Vaudésir (2013)
Comments: I fell for yet another barrel sample. I was totally vulnerable to this wine’s exotic nose of clove-studded apple, potpourri and baked peaches with crumble topping. This should be bottled in November. Despite the wine’s breadth, it is hardly heavy. Unlike so many other Chablis during this trip, however, it’s not tannin that keeps the wine inline. It’s just beautifully integrated acidity. 95 pts
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14 William Fevre Chablis Grand Cru les Preuses (2011)
Comments: This feminine and minerally wine has an impressive potential to keep well though it’s enticing today. Harmony and persistence give this wine clear focus. It is impressively floral, lemony and chalky with notes of sea salt. Those that unilaterally dismiss larger operations are missing out on some most impressive wines chez Fèvre. 95 pts
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  • 1546118alexandre It was a pleasure to welcome you, dear Christy at the Domaine Daniel-Etienne DEFAIX. You are a passionated and enthousiast winelover, and your interest to the true terroirs wine is very enjoyable. hope to see you soon. Alexandre

  • 1060100Christy Canterbury MW Hi Alexandre, It was a great visit at DEFAIX. The wines from your domaine are true treasures! Best, Christy

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