Country, Region: France, Burgundy
Butteaux is one of the climats of Premier Cru Montmains which is regarded as one of the top Premier Cru vineyards in Chablis. Located in the next valley to the south and east of the Premier Cru Vaillons, it is one of the most southern locations for Premier Cru in Chablis, thus a slightly cooler site with a slightly later harvest. Here there is a very thin layer of clay which overlays the Kimmeridgian marls.
’Second vintage. This a domaine wine, also all barrel more than half in large formats. A small volume from these vines as there’s plenty of court-noué – about 40 hl/ha. Had this since 2019 from an uncle – nearly 3 hectares extra. This is the first part of Butteaux as you leave Chablis next to Forets… This has a width that implies a finer texture, faintly warmer-spiced. Hmm – this is mouth-filling, generous, wine – but with clarity and a finely mobile flavour. The oak is modifying the flavour to an extent so give this a couple of years in the cellar before attacking – so despite how delicious it already is – this could become an even greater wine.’ Bill Nanson, Burgundy-report.com, January 2022.
Pierrick Laroche and Domaine des Hâtes
Located in the north-west sector of Chablis in the village of Maligny, Pierrick Laroche now runs this family estate which was established by his father in the 1970s. His father gradually gained planting rights and slowly added to the family vineyard holdings over time. Today the current size of the estate is around 25 hectares. In 2010 Pierrick produced his first vintage to great acclaim (his father had previously sold the grapes to La Chablisienne).
Pierrick has a degree in oenology from Beaune and after graduating he travelled the world, doing various internships to gain experience before returning home to start making wine and take over the family vineyards for himself.
His cellars are built into the side of a hill in the village enabling much of the work to be done by gravity. Vinifications are done classically in stainless steel tanks with some of the Premier and Grand Cru wines aged in used barrels for a small portion of each cuvée where the wines undergo full malolactic. His oldest plot of vines is Les Châtillons, which was planted in early 1970s and is located just behind the hill of Grand Crus. This cuvée also has a small portion of barrel ageing, employed to great effect.
Beginning with vintage 2016, Pierrick began a tiny négoce operation to augment his range, buying must from friends farming predominately on the left side of the river. These wines now include the premier crus of Beauroy, Beauregard, and Vau de Vey, along with the grand cru of Bougros. In 2019, Pierrick inherited 8 acres of vines from his father-in-law in the southern sector of Chablis around the village of Courgis. This includes Petit Chablis, 5.5 acres of Chablis, and just over half an acre of the premier cru Les Butteaux.