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Domaine Servin, Chablis “Première Cuvée Les Pargues”Burgundy, France 2018 (750mL)

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Domaine Servin, Chablis “Première Cuvée Les Pargues” Burgundy, France 2018 (750mL)

Fruit
Earth
Body
Tannin
Acid
Alcohol

Welcome to another episode of Burgundy’s “game of inches,” Chablis edition. Today, we have one of the cornerstone vineyard holdings of Domaine Servin, “Les Pargues,” a site the Servins (and anyone who’s tried today’s wine) believe was wrongly left out of the Premier Cru club when the classifications were drawn up back in the 1920s and ’30s. Situated just a few kilometers due south of Chablis proper, wedged between Premiers Crus “Montmains'' and “Vosgros,” Les Pargues enjoys the southeasterly aspect of the former and, thanks to that grievous oversight all those years ago, produces one of the most scandalous values in all of Chablis: Servin’s aptly named “Première Cuvée Les Pargues.” I’d be hard-pressed to name another Chablis that over-performs to this degree; there’s just no way I wouldn’t peg it as a much-pricer Premier Cru if tasting it blind. 


Past generations of Servins were growing Chardonnay in Chablis as far back as the 16th century when the monks in the local monastery cited their vineyards as the source of superlative fruit. François Servin is the latest to carry the torch, and with 40-year-old vines at his disposal in Les Pargues, he’s got one of the great “secret weapon” wines of all time in his arsenal. As savvy wine pickups go, this one tops the list—grab as much as you can fit, because this ‘18 is pitch-perfect in every way.



The Servin family has left an indelible mark on the history of Chablis, traceable in the region back to 1570. There have been coopers, grape growers, and winemakers in their midsts, each generation building on the traditions of the past. Today, the domaine covers 36 hectares, with 11 of those located in Les Pargues. In an interview with Burgundy writer Ola Bergman, François Servin noted that his father tried to have Les Pargues re-classified as Premier Cru, but was denied. Nevertheless, the vineyard—all 11 hectares in one single parcel—remains a centerpiece of an estate that also has holdings in four Grand Crus and six Premier Crus. It was François’ grandfather who first formed a partnership with the famous wine writer Alexis Lichine, whose unmitigated adoration of their Chablis launched the property to dizzying heights of international fame. 


The Servins carefully preserve their indigenous structure by gracefully melding traditional and modern techniques. Following tradition, Les Pargues is hand-harvested and each individual parcel is fermented separately to isolate the character of that particular terroir. Once fermentation is complete, the wine remains in stainless steel for a gentle but necessary aging process, polishing the freshness of the fruit to an otherworldly shine. Servin’s commitment to pure Chablis is evident in each crisp, delineated sip. The wine is bottled at peak concentration, capturing the essence of Les Pargues without overworking the wine, and instead, letting the unadulterated flavors speak for themselves.


The wine is a soft yellow with light green reflections flickering at the center. Aromas are dominated by brisk mineral elements accented by a bouquet of white flowers, jasmine tea, and under-ripe citrus rind. On the palate, this Chablis carries itself with the expected uprightness, but goes the extra mile by enveloping its limestone core with softer, fleshier notes of tinned pears, fresh grasses, and crushed oyster. It’s neat, juicy, and well-balanced. Each sip tightens the corners of your mouth with fine-tuned acidity, an intuitive pairing for a simple, heartwarming dish like this oil-based pantry pasta covered in a mound of fluffy parmesan cheese. From my perspective, there’s nothing more comforting than a cold bottle of easy, crisp Chablis and the knowledge that there are eleven more sleeping in the cellar, waiting for the next perfect weeknight dinner. 




Domaine Servin, Chablis “Première Cuvée Les Pargues” Burgundy, France 2018 - SommSelect

  • CountryFrance
  • RegionBurgundy
  • Sub-RegionChablis
  • SoilKimmeridgian Limestone
  • FarmingOrganic
  • BlendChardonnay
  • Alcohol12.5%
  • Service Temp.45-50° F
  • GlasswareAll-Purpose Stem
  • DrinkNow-2024+
  • DecantingOptional
  • PairingSimple Pantry Pasta

  • CountryFrance
  • RegionBurgundy
  • Sub-RegionChablis
  • SoilKimmeridgian Limestone
  • FarmingOrganic
  • BlendChardonnay
  • Alcohol12.5%
  • Temp.Serve at 45-50° F
  • GlasswareAll-Purpose Stem
  • DrinkingNow-2024+
  • DecantingOptional
  • PairingSimple Pantry Pasta