94pts Jasper Morris
Picked early. This is at a slightly different stage of elevage so is currently cloudy. Stones rinsed in lemon sums up the bouquet. Sunny and austere together, a mature terroir, steely backbone and finish. Bring on the grilled fish.
Barrel Sample: 91-94
93pts Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Derived from old vines in Les Minots (that are a source for the Fèvre massale selection), as well as holdings in Roncières and Chatains, the 2020 Chablis 1er Cru Vaillons unwinds in the glass with notes of white flowers, crisp stone fruit and clear honey. Medium to full-bodied, satiny and enveloping, it's a beautifully vibrant, racy wine that concludes with a long, penetrating finish. It's the best young Vaillons I've ever tasted chez Fèvre. The 2020 vintage makes the first year of official organic conversion for 78-hectare Domaine William Fèvre, though it's actually the 15th year the estate has been practicing organic. Didier Séguier reported that the year's challenges were twofold: having to pick harvest dates with unerring precision, and the necessity to sort out sunburnt grapes. The results, however, are once again exceptional, and it's hard to think of any of Chablis's larger estates that can match Fèvre for consistency and quality across the board. The 2020s, as ever bottled under Diam, are certainly built to evolve gracefully, but they will also show their cards sooner than the spectacular but hyper-concentrated 2019s.
93pts John Gilman
I really love the size and shape of the 2020 Fèvre Vaillons, which deliver lovely detail in its complex aromatic constellation of lime, green apple, a touch of tangerine, beeswax, limestone minerality and a topnote of fruit blossoms. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, snappy and focused, with an excellent core, superb balance and complexity and a very long, vibrant and classy finish. Excellent juice.
Touches of menthol and wood surround the floral and pepper scented nose that isn't quite as fresh as that of the Montmains. There is by contrast good energy to the very rich and nicely voluminous flavors that conclude in a bitter lemon and intensely saline-inflected finale.
The 2020 Chablis Vaillons 1er Cru is cloudy and very primal on the nose, making it difficult to read. The palate has good depth and plenty of rondeur. It’s quite rich relative to other cuvées and does not quite deliver the same tension on the finish. Possibly one of the early-drinking Premier Crus from William Fèvre
Very fresh bouquet with notes of citrus and white-fleshed fruit. Fresh and supple, the wine is marked by mineral notes that are typical of the appellation.
Pair with fish dishes, grilled or in a light sauce; various seafood, oysters and sushi.