Jean-Marc Pillot, Chassagne-Montrachet
Jean-Marc Pillot, Chassagne-Montrachet

Jean-Marc Pillot, Chassagne-Montrachet

Burgundy, France 2021 (750mL)
Regular price$99.00

Jean-Marc Pillot, Chassagne-Montrachet

Please note, this bottle has had a label change, we are currently working to update our website with the new label

Whisper “Montrachet” in the ear of any French wine aficionado and you’ll almost certainly see a knowing, longing smile emerge. That’s because this name is virtually synonymous with the world’s very best Chardonnay, nay the world’s best white wine, period. Of course, if we’re talking specifically about the Grand Cru “Le Montrachet,” then that smile may turn upside down when the bill comes due, as these wines are easily into the four digits per bottle now. But don’t despair! We have the answer: Less than a mile away, the maestro of Chassagne, Jean-Marc Pillot, farms a few tiny, pristine parcels of old vines and produces a wine with all the exquisite balance and mineral majesty of the granddaddy up the road. And you get it all for under $100! So don’t hesitate, it’s no coincidence that every Pillot wine we’ve offered has been a rapid sellout...

Pillot’s wines balance impressive soil character and electric minerality with vivid, pure fruit. They epitomize the Chassagne-Montrachet terroir while offering remarkable approachability in their youth and impressive complexity and evolution after even modest cellar aging. This is true year in and year out, but it’s doubly true in the instant classic, throwback vintage of 2021, when low yields and cooler (compared to the previous handful of summers) temperatures led to some of the best wines in a generation. We love these wines, our customers love these wines, and the only challenge with Pillot is summoning the willpower to sell our meager allocation each vintage instead of shuttling it into our personal cellars. Honestly, if we had to list one (affordable) producer that epitomized the unending charm of Chassagne, it’d probably be Jean-Marc Pillot. 

Jean-Marc Pillot is the fourth consecutive generation of his family to be involved in winemaking. He began apprenticing directly beneath his father, Jean, in 1985. By 1991, he had assumed leadership of the family property, though he was assisted in numerous regards by his wife, Nadine, and sister, Beatrice. Pillot owns and farms a broad range of vineyards in the villages of Santenay, Puligny, Meursault, Montigny, and Remigny. Still, there is little-to-no debate that the family’s finest wines originate from their Chassagne-Montrachet holdings. This is their specialty. 

Today’s wine hails predominantly from the small lieu-dit (named site) “Les Masures,” which hugs the lower slope of Premier Cru “Les Champs-Gains” and is just a quick jog to Grand Cru Montrachet. Because Pillot only owns a half-hectare of vines here (10-70 years of age) and employs strict sorting during his manual harvest, he can only emerge with eight or nine barrels of this cuvée on any given year. In 2021 that amount was cut back back even further and Jean-Marc and his son Antonin made the decision to add fruit from all seven of their old vine parcels in the village. They like the result so much that going forward they will bottle only this one Chassagne village, which has both more breadth and depth and also more snappy structure thanks to the perfect blend of lots that go into it. Back at the winery, the Pillot family spontaneously ferments this special Chardonnay in mostly used French oak barrels where it spends a year on its fine lees. Following, the wine is racked into stainless steel tanks to rest and “tighten up” for an additional six months. 

This patient, time-consuming approach means Pillot does not need to filter or cold-stabilize his whites, so they always retain a certain vividness and dimension that is missing from many higher-priced neighbors’ wines. The wine is rich and filling yet incredibly tense and laser-like in its approach. This is the appeal of top Chassagne—it’s ability to dance atop a piano wire with incredible depth and density. What’s more, the accessibility, or ‘openness’ of the wine is always what gives Pillot its distinction: As long as it’s properly served, this provides every luscious fruit (salted lemon peel, lime, white peach, yellow apple, pineapple core) and tension-filled minerality/savoriness (crushed rock, sea shell, limestone, wildflowers, baking spice) that comes with the best white Burgundy, whether enjoying now or in 10+ years! If doing the former, which is perfectly acceptable, serve in your largest Burgundy stems around 55 degrees after a 120-minute decant. Savor slowly, and enjoy—this is the gateway “drug” to the best white Burgundy has to offer!

Jean-Marc Pillot, Chassagne-Montrachet

Daily Discovery

Build a Case is a one-of-a-kind subscription service that allows you the freedom to explore our expansive wine selection and consolidate your orders into a custom case over time — without the cost of shipping.
View all