When we got a call from our old friend Didier Picq, who knows a thing or two about making good Chablis, saying we should check out the wines of young Pierrick, it felt like being given an invaluable inside track on an unraced 2 year old about to make its début on the racetrack. A quick hop on Eurostar, an enthusiastic shake of the hands and a short tasting later the deal was done. Didier was right. Pierrick is one to watch. He currently sells off much of what he farms to négociants (prices are good and it’s great for cashflow) but we are persuading him to keep more of his precious juice.
He only makes three wines, and with only a shade more than a hectare of 1er Cru, most of what he farms is Petit Chablis and Chablis. Ironically his Petit Chablis is almost the most mineral of the three, showing great precision and energy. The vines are high up on the slope where there is less clay and the stony, chalky soil character really shines through. The Chablis has more richness though Pierrick keeps it perfectly in check, maintaining its linear quality and drive. The cuvée l’Homme Mort comes from the Fourchaume vineyard, which is one of the warmer plots and ripens effortlessly. Pierrick makes sure he picks early to maintain the wine’s freshness and balance, without conceding the natural richness of the Cru. All three wines are currently aged in stainless steel rather than oak. These wines are both exciting and promising and should be tried.
We have restaurants already chewing through this, although it was only bottled in October! Clearly it has the scope to improve much more over the next couple of years. It is richness than the Petit Chablis and its natural weight of fruit almost masks its strong minerality. However, as it opens out in the glass the complexity starts to flourish. Impressive. Drink from 2016.