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The wines of Chablis and the Grand Auxerrois: 3rd edition available!

30 June 2019
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George's first book, Chablis and the Wines of the Yonne, published in 1984, won both the André Simon and the Glenfiddich awards. In this third edition, she writes about the grandchildren of the wine growers in her first book!

Chablis is a complex region and many arguments regarding the appellation’s strict definition ensued – which villages could use the name, was it essential that wines were made exclusively from Chardonnay and how important was it that vines were grown on the distinctive Kimmeridgian limestone soil?

As ever with Rosemary George’s books it is her amicable interviews with such producers that form the backbone of the book.

In The wines of Chablis and the Grand Auxerrois Rosemary George MW explores the intricacies of the wines of this region, taking an expert look at a wine many of us may believe we know well.
George notes that if pushed she would have to admit that Chablis is her favourite wine, saying: “I have been visiting Chablis and drinking Chablis regularly for 40 years and have never tired of the wine. It defies description.” The defining Kimmeridgian soil gives flavour and depth to these wines, making them unique amongst Chardonnays. Wines from the two lower classifications, Petit Chablis and Chablis, drunk young, have completely different characteristics to aged wines from the Premier and Grand Cru vineyards.


Aside from the constants of soil and grape variety there are other significant factors in the evolution of Chablis. Wine growers are in a constant state of high alert for inclement weather – both frost and hail can obliterate crops and climate change has led to greater unpredictability. But it is notable that in a region northerly enough to make grape-growing challenging, many vignerons have in recent years chosen to reduce their reliance on pesticides and fertilisers. Whether that means converting to organic or biodynamic farming or simply practising lutte raisonnée, or sustainable viticulture, there seems to be a move to preserve the soil and create wines that express their terroir.


As ever with Rosemary George’s books it is her amicable interviews with such producers that form the backbone of the book. The insights each offers regarding their approach to growing, creating and selling their wines make it an eye-opening picture of Chablis and the neighbouring Grand Auxerrois region at the end of the century’s second decade.

Rosemary George MW (1979) is the author of thirteen books. She has been a freelance wine writer since 1981 and has been visiting Chablis regularly for 40 years. Her very first book, Chablis and the Wines of the Yonne, published in 1984, won both the André Simon and the Glenfiddich awards; a second edition followed in 2007. In this third edition, she writes about the grandchildren of the wine growers in her first book. 
She is the current President of the Circle of Wine Writers.

The wines of Chablis and the Grand Auxerrois is published by Infinite Ideas on 30 June 2019.

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