One of the somewhat overlooked producers of the mighty Chambertin vineyard is Domaine Ponsot.
It’s a magnificent Chambertin and while the Clos de la Roche and the Clos Saint-Denis are great wines – the Chambertin is perhaps the most elusive and complex wine in the Ponsot portfolio.
The current question is however, what will happen to the Chambertin and Domaine Ponsot after Laurent Ponsot decided to leave the family estate, and pursue fame and fortune with his own negociant business.
This is still not 100% clear – but I presume that either Laurent Ponsot or the Domaine Ponsot will continue to make a Chambertin from the plot they rent from the Mercier family – unless the lease is about to run out or should be terminated for some reason.
Regardless – the plot is still owned by the Mercier family, and some great wines have been made over the last decades by Laurent Ponsot.
So lets take a closer look at the plot that is producing the Domaine Ponsot Chambertin.
Chambertin – the vineyard
The Chambertin vineyard is 12.90 ha and is sometimes seem in as one unit with Chambertin Clos de Bèze. Chambertin and Clos de Bèze are no doubt the two top terroirs of Gevrey-Chambertin, and while Chambertin is regarded as the top vineyard – Chambertin then could be described as the king – and Clos de Bèze is the queen … being a Dane I know how complex this can be!
To the point: The Chambertin vineyard is located between Chambertin Clos de Bèze and Latriciéres- Chambertin just above Charmes-Chambertin – see map below.
Taking a closer look at Chambertin we see a relatively large number of plots reflecting the around 20 owners of Chambertin
Chambertin is more a owners vineyard – meaning there are less negociant bottlings of Chambertin than there is of Chambertin Clos de Bèze. Still the Chambertin ownership structure can be quite complex – as different metayage arrangements are found here and most other places in Burgundy.
This is also the case with the plots that are the source of the grapes Ponsot use to produce the magnificent Chambertin.
The Mercier family – Domaine des Chezeaux – owner but not producer
Domaine Ponsot rents the plot of Chambertin from the Mercier family, who owns Domaine des Chezeaux in Gevrey Chambertin.
Before we go to the vineyard maps and details – a little about the Mercier family and Domaine des Chezeaux.
The origin of Domaine des Chezeaux dates back to 1928 when the Mercier family established it self in Gevrey-Chambertin.
The Mercier family have a fine portfolio of vineyards with plots in Le Chambertin, Clos St. Denis, Griotte-Chambertin, Chambolle Les Charmes, Gevrey Chambertin Laveaux-Saint-Jacques, Gevrey Chambertin Les Cazetiers and Gevrey Chambertin village.
All the vineyards are today leased to other vignerons – Domaine Ponsot has Le Chambertin, Clos St. Denis and 57% of Griotte Chambertin. The Chambolle Charmes vineyard is also leased to Domaine Ponsot, and the Gevrey 1er cru and village vineyards to Domaine Berthaut in Fixin – and are now made by the talented Amelie Berthaut. The rest of the Griotte-Chambertin holdings – 43% – is leased to Domaine Rene Leclerc.
The metayage agreements ensure that Domaine des Chezeaux get wine from the vignerons, and these wines are then for most parts sold under the Domaine des Chezeaux label.
The name Chezeaux comes from the village terroir that is located just outside the estate buildings just north of the Chateau Gevrey-Chambertin.
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