To Chablis or not to Chablis, that should be the question. Chablis, that small white wine enclave of northern Burgundy is fairly unusual in the world of wine in that it's never been effectively copied. Claret style, Burgundian and Rhone style are all common terms around the globe, but Chablis style hasn't yet joined the list.

Produced entirely from Chardonnay, the unique soil strata helps impart a flinty, chalky finish to the wine which is often referred to as steely. And with oak contact generally at a minimum, you tend not to get any of the ‘fat’ oak vanilla finishes much beloved in the rest of Burgundy. One thing for certain is that these wines are unique in their style and incredibly crisp and refreshing.

The best value wines tend to be from the smaller Petit Chablis region where prices almost reach single figures but, for pure definition and class, I tend to spend most of my pocket money on the premier cru styles which are even allowed to see a little oak.

If you prefer your chardonnays a tad more oaky, however, Chablis has you covered there as well, but you do have to pay for the privilege of their fabulous grand crus wines. Ah, bliss.

The Herald: The joys of ChablisThe joys of Chablis (Image: free)

Cave de Vignerons de Chablis, Petit Chablis

Dry and crisp with hints of lemon rind and minerality on the finish. Great with shellfish, especially crab or langoustines. Waitrose £14.99

Domaine Michaut Frères ‘le Jardin du Cure’ Chablis

I do love the family-owned vineyards of Burgundy and this one produces some exceptional wines. Made from old vines, the style is richer than most with hints of lemon and a creamy oak dominated finish. Rather splendid. Majestic £24.99 per bottle or £20.99 mix six