Domaine Clément Lavallée, St Bris Le Vineux

Domaine Clément Lavallée, St Bris Le Vineux

Clément Lavallée is one of the rising stars from the new generation in Chablis. His father was also a vigneron but Clément has different ideas and so decided to work separately, starting in 2019 with just 1.6 hectares of Chablis and then expanding to 5 hectares with vineyards in Saint Bris and Bourgogne Côtes d’Auxerre. In 2021 his father retired and he inherited further holdings to take the new domaine to 14 hectares. He was then also joined by his sister Caroline.
2022 is only the domaine’s third harvest and the wines already have a clear identity: they are singular, distinctive and really exciting. The philosophy has always been low intervention, both in the vineyard and the cellar, with a desire to preserve the Chardonnay profile and be inherently closer to the terroir. Chemicals and insecticides are not used, and treatments are minimal. Interestingly, modern day tractors are eschewed in favour of older, lighter vehicles that consume less, and compact the soil less, thereby increasing the soil’s biodiversity.
They have a strict press selection and only keep the finest juice, with the remainder being sold off in bulk. Ageing is done mainly in old oak barrels to increase the contact on the lees and thus furnish the “acid” spine. The whites are racked and blended after one year. The short aged cuvées (Saint Bris, Aligoté, Côte d’Auxerre Blanc and straight Chablis) are very slightly fined and / or filtered according to the complexity of the vintage. They are bottled at the end of the following year. After blending, the single vineyard Chablis and Chablis 1er Crus continue their ageing in stainless steel tanks. They undergo a slight filtration to ensure clarity and to increase their purity. They are bottled the following spring after 20 months of ageing in total.