The vineyard Blanchot Dessus is located just south of Le Montrachet – the Chassagne part of the legendary Grand Cru Montrachet.
Blanchot Dessus is a small and relatively unknown vineyard with few owners – somewhat overlooked compared to its more famours nighbours Montrachet and Criots-Batard Montrachet.
But what is the history of this vineyard and who owns a part of this serenely located vineyard. Lets take a historic tour of Blanchot Dessus.
Chassagne-Montrachet Blanchots Dessus
There are two Blanchots vineyards in Chassagne – Blanchots Dessus a 1er cru, and Blanchots Dessous a village terroir located just south of Criots Batard Montrachet. This article is about the 1er cru only.
Blanchots Dessus is located just south of Montrachet i.e. on the Chassagne side of Montrachet. Blanchots Dessus is located “above” Criots Batard-Montrachet, and is one of the smallest 1er crus in Chassagne with a total area of 1.17 ha.
Historic view of Blanchots Dessus
I have worked quite a lot with historic research of the Burgundy vineyards, and it always strikes me that the history of the vineyards in Meursault, Puligny and Chassagne is quite short, and rather poorly documented compared to the great Grand Crus of the Cote de Nuits.
This is also the case of Blanchot Dessus – today ranked as on of the very best 1er crus of Chassagne-Montrachet. And while it’s still quite unknown and overlooked by many, it certainly deserves a closer look and a Vineyard Insight … so lets go to the southern end of Montrachet.
A part of Montrachet – and then?
Looking at the cadastre maps from 1839 we see that the area today called Blanchot Dessus was a part of the rather wast area – Montrachet or Mont rachet – see map below.
This is confirmed by the 1861 classification1 where the plots 34 – 48 are a part of Le Montrachet, although this part of Monrachet only was classified as 2e Classe as opposed to the rest of the Montrachet vineyard that was classified as 1er Classe.
Below we see the cadastre map from 1839 .. and it’s seen that the plots 34-48 constitutes what we know as Blanchot Dessus today.
So Blanchot Dessus has in fact been a part of Montrachet at least until 1861. And this leads to the next question .. when was Blanchot Dessus parted from Montrachet. Danguy and Aubertin2 mentioned Blanchots in the book from 1892 (p. 36) as deuxiéme cuvée. This is the first mention of the Blanchots vineyard I have seen, but sadly Danguy and Aubertin doesn’t provide any information about the area of Blanchots.
Presumably Blanchots at that time included both Blanchots Dessus and Blanchots Dessous- otherwise the rating of the terroir would have been premiére cuvée. Danguy and Aubertin mentioned the following owners on Blanchots: Michaud-Picard and Paquelin-Perret2.
So this indicates that Blanchots have been established between 1861 and 1892 by taking the southern ends of both Montrachet and Batard-Montrachet and joining those areas in a vineyard called Chassagne-Montrachet Blanchots.
Rodier3 does not mention Chassagene-Montrachet Blanchots at all, and he is rather superficial in his description of the Chassagne terroirs – especially the terroirs used for producing white wines in 1920.
Indirectly Rodier3 does however confirm that Blanchots Dessus was parted from Montrachet in 1920 as the area of Montrachet (Chassagne and Puligny section combined) was 7.4951 ha .. compared to the current 8.00. This shows that Blanchot Dessus was parted from Montrachet before Rodier wrote his book in 1920 – otherwise the vineyard would have been more than 8 ha at this point.
So Rodier3 indrectly confirms that Blanchot Dessus was created at some point between the 1861 classificstion and 1892, and where Rodier published the first version of his book.
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