25% of winery leaders and co-leaders in Chablis are under the age for 40. So what are these younger, newer faces in Chablis up to? Many of them have a wealth of ideas and practices enabling them to truly make a mark, whether within their own domaine, or at a regional level. With issues concerning the climate at the forefront of this next generation’s mind, many of their interests are focused on methods to combat, or at least adapt to, these changes.
Often this impulse to bring in fresh ideas is prompted by life experiences found outside of Chablis: not only is this generation of winemakers more educated than their forebears (in 2016 in the Yonne 73% of winery managers under 40 had obtained qualifications to the level of the baccalaureat or higher, compared to 41% of those aged 40-50) but there is in general a trend of younger winemakers having spent time abroad.
There is a clear trend of the new generation of winemakers breaking away from family traditions – in general with the consent of their parents.
With the 2023 harvest in full swing, all of the winemakers, both the previous generation and the next, will be hard at work ensuring the grapes are all collected and to the quality they should be. What is clear is that the future of Chablis is in excellent hands.