Domaine Louis Michel et Fils

Domaine Louis Michel et Fils

A family of winemakers since the 19th century the Michel family vineyards are planted on the first slopes to be farmed by Cistercian monks during the 11th century. The 25 hectares encapsulate 3 Grand Crus and 7 Premier Crus as well as Chablis and Petit Chablis terroir. Guillaume Michel runs the domaine now, 80% of the vines are farmed organically, he is strictly sustainable in the vineyards with the highest level of HVE certification. 

Biodiversity is vital to their work with hedgerow populations of insects and a population of bees humming through the vineyards. In the winery, the wines are vinified only in stainless steel, using natural yeasts to preserve the expression of terroir in its purest form. Without the presence of oxygen in the early stages of their development these wines take longer to express themselves in bottle, but richly reward those who wait. 

Burgundy
FRANCE

A FAMILY AFFAIR

This is the story of the Michel family, who has been making wines in the heart of Chablis since the 19thcentury.A firmly rooted sense of excellence is passed down from generation to generation.

Louis Michel & Fils hasalways been a family business, and is managed today by Guillaume Michel, who takes great pride inperpetuating the Domaine’s ethos.

Viticulture

A UNIQUE TERROIR Kimmeridgian and Portlandian subsoil, a semi-continental climate and an emblematic grape, Chardonnay: these are the ingredients that create the magic of the Chablis terroir. AN EXCEPTIONAL VINEYARD The family vineyard, whose vines are 45 years old on average, is located in the heart of the original Chablis terroir, on the most prestigious parcels within a radius of two kilometres from the winery. The Domaine’s vineyards cover all four appellations: Chablis Grand Cru, Premier Cru, Chablis and PetitChablis, offering the whole range of aromas that this unique wine can produce. The Domaine makes three prestigious Grand Crus – including the legendary Grenouilles – as well as seven Premier Crus. The vineyards of the Domaine are concentrated on the first slopes to be farmed by Cistercian monks during the 11th century. Louis Michel & Fils produces twelve wines: – Three Grand Crus: Grenouilles, Les Clos, and Vaudésir – Seven Premier Crus: Montmain, Forêts, Butteaux, Butteaux “Vieilles Vignes”, Vaillons, Séchets, Fourchaume, and Montée de Tonnerre – Chablis – Petit Chablis

Winemaking

THE ART OF DISCREET SAVOIR-FAIRE The Domaine has one guiding principle: in a terroir as rich and unique as Chablis, the wines are made in the vineyard. At every stage, human intervention is kept to the strictest minimum, so that nature can express itself fully. This approach first manifests itself through the work carried out in the vineyard, through restrained viticulture: ground cover, disbudding, green harvesting, working on the land to avoid the use of herbicides, and many other practices. Respect for the terroir is priority number one. Vintage only begins when the grapes have reached perfect ripeness. The Grand Crus, some Premier Crus and the Vieilles Vignes are all hand-picked. During vinification and maturation, the quest for absolute discretion goes on: fermentations only occur using natural yeast, and added ingredients are limited. AN ALTERNATIVE APPROACH As a pioneer and now a leader on the subject, Louis Michel & Fils made the bold decision to vinify its wines only in stainless steel tanks: this neutral material does not have any effect on the natural qualities of the chardonnay grapes. This approach is certainly apparent in the Louis Michel & Fils style: our Chablis wines exude finesse, purity and freshness. Louis Michel was one of the first in the 1960s to completely turn away from maturation in barrels, and to advocate the sole use of stainless steel. The Domaine’s conviction is that wood has no benefit to a wine that derives from a terroir as unique and expressive as the one in Chablis. Louis Michel & Fils therefore matures its wines only in stainless steel tanks. What better way to showcase nature than to let it express itself without any artifice? Since the 1960s, this practice has become widespread, but it remains the Domaine’s signature, and Louis Michel & Fils Chablis is now a reference in stainless steel maturation throughout the world.

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