Pronunciation: [sha-BLEE; pl. sha-BLEEZ]
Though the United States, Australia and South Africa all make a wine labeled Chablis, only France creates a true Chablis, made entirely from grand cru ("great growth") vineyards that lie in a single block facing south and west toward the village. The term will appear on the labels of these special wines, followed by the name of the vineyard from which it came. Next in excellence are the Chablis labeled premier cru (meaning "first growth"). Others are considered "simple" Chablis or "petit Chablis."
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.