2015 Val de Mer, Chablis, White Burgundy, France.
The Val de Mer label is a great value lineup of handcrafted wines made by Patrick Piuze, famous for his dynamic Chablis under his own label, at Domaine Moutard-Diligent a Chablis, and while mostly known for their Val de Mer Sparkling Wines this latest basic Chablis is a wine that punches way above it’s price class, making it a real winner for a vintage that has seen a hyper price jump. I tried this DNS Wines imported Val de Mer Chablis along with the no dosage Brut, both make for awesome party wines, they have old world charm and both are vibrant and expressive with mineral driven personalities. The Piuze Val de Mer Chablis AC gives Chardonnay and Kimmeridgian soil purity and highlights the regions terroir, as with all the vineyards he sources from, he tries to get organic or grapes grown “lutte raisonée” (organic within reason) and Patrick goes all native yeasts in his wines with this cuvee seeing only tank fermentation and aging, making it vivid, fresh and steely, but with some substance and density in textural mouth feel. Piuze, who has worked with (or for) Brocard, Olivier Leflaive and Verget over the last decade, partnered with Champagne house Moultard, who bought this winery in Chablis, in 2010 to expand his production, since his own wines sell out in an instant, so Val de Mer was born, and it’s been an immediate success, especially with Bistro(s) and Wine Bar(s) buyers looking for small production authentic Chablis and Sparkling values. In recent years Val de Mer and Kermit Lynch’s Savary have been the savvy choices in this sector, and I’m a huge fan of both options, with this 2015 Val de Mer being a standout. The nose is flinty and chalky with mineral tones, lemony notes, hints of white flowers and brine before a vivacious palate of steely green apple, melon, lemon/lime and crisp pear fruits, subtle earthy elements, oyster shell, dried unsweetened honey and a yeasty rich feel. Lifted by it’s natural acidity, this warm vintage Val de Mer Chablis delivers a full flavored, but balanced wine of graceful detail and is gratefully pleasing from start to finish, drink now, and be sure to watch out for the Cru versions and of course the bubbly!
($24 Est.) 90 Points, grapelive

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