Taste: What to Drink: Simonnet-Febvre Petit Chablis 2004

Simonnet-Febvre Petit Chablis 2004

Pennsylvanians get a chance this month to vote with

Pennsylvanians get a chance this month to vote with their dollars on the most important wine controversy of the decade — the great closure debate. The PLCB has purchased equal quantities of the same wine, a classic French petit chablis, half with corks and half topped with screw caps. Petit chablis, an understated white wine whose most fetching feature is its vibrancy and freshness, is a perfect candidate for cork-free treatment. Such wines are particularly vulnerable to musty “cork taint.”

Made entirely with chardonnay grapes grown in Burgundy’s northernmost district, this petit chablis from Simonnet-Febvre reflects pristine cold-climate characteristics. Bracingly dry and tart, it has an icy kiss of refreshment that’s as clean and mineral as a West Coast oyster. It makes an ideal partner for raw shellfish or aged goat cheese — as long as it isn’t corked.