Your taste buds confirmed long ago that a cool glass of Chablis and a plate of oysters is a perfect combination, but were you aware that science can confirm the levels of perfection in such a pairing?
Chablis, a wine heralding from the Chablis region in the North of Burgundy, is made from 100% unoaked Chardonnay. Grapes have been grown here since the 12th century when Cistercian monks discovered that the river Serein, which flows through the region, creates the perfect climate for growing Chardonnay.
Chablis is notably higher in acidity and lighter in colour than other Chardonnays due to the cooler climate. The varietal characteristics of the Chardonnay grape are highly pronounced in Chablis; green apple, citrus, tropical accents, with a distinctively mineral, flinty quality. The terroir of the Chablis AOC plays a considerable role in the flavor composition of the wine, and by extension, with your oysters.
The notorious characteristic of Chablis is its minerality, which is due to the AOC’s terroir. The soils of Chablis are famous for Kimmeridgian clay and chalk, much like that found in Champagne region. During prehistoric times, the Chablis region was part of a vast tropical sea that was full of life. As the sea retreated, the limestone soil was left full of fossils, which over time, developed into the mineral rich soil that key to creating the distinctively mineral Chablis Chardonnays.
The classical pairing of oysters and Chablis is as basic as the elements that define them: oysters produced from the mineral-rich sea floors, and grapes produced from the mineral-rich Kimmeridgian soil of France’s Chablis region. So, it’s no surprise that wine from soil made up in part of oyster shells should pair so perfectly with oysters.
Chablis has a wonderful concentrated minerality, which balances well with the crisp fruitiness also found in the wine. While Chablis can be delicious young, these wines are meant to age in bottle and are best after five to ten years.
These two products are a result of the distinct terroirs in which they are produced, and are complements of the most elementary form. Perhaps Chablis and oysters is the purest example of food and wine pairings that there is. Enjoy Millesima’s extensive collection of Chablis for your next special occasion, or for a decadent night in.