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Vinous Score: 96 Open Vinous Score: rating modal
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Agrapart's most iconic Champagne, Vénus is crafted from a half-acre vineyard named La Fosse Aux Pourceaux which is located in the middle of the Avize's hillside and is more influenced by the stony subsoil than its L'Avizoise cellar mate. The Champagne's moniker is derived from the name of the horse that once tilled this steep parcel.

VINOUS WINE MEDIA 96 POINTS - "The 2013 Extra Brut Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Vénus is a gorgeous and eccentric wine. Sweet floral and minty overtones give the Vénus its distinctive high-toned profile. The richness and depth of this Chardonnay from a parcel planted in 1959 that has always been manually farmed, comes alive with a bit of time in the glass. The Vénus is such a special Champagne, as it is elusive and constantly changing in the glass as it shows a different side of its personality with each taste. I very much admire the sense of precision here. Vénus remains one of the most distinctive wines in all of Champagne. No dosage..." Pascal Agrapart, who has run his family's Côte de Blancs Champagne firm since 1980, has recently been joined by his oldest son Amboise who represents the fifth generation of Agraparts to produce Champagne from the family's estate. While certainly a callused "man of the earth" who enjoys long days in the vineyards, Pascal is equally versed in the technical details of the cellar and is a true master of the winemaking craft. Long over-shadowed by his dynamic Avize neighbor, Anselme Selosse, the soft spoken Agrapart has finally gained the critical acclaim and notoriety that his meticulously crafted, terroir-specific Champagnes so richly deserve. In fact, he has emerged as a leading role model for today's generation of aspiring grower-Champagne producers. Pascal and Amboise farm 30 acres of vines, which are mostly situated in the Grand Cru villages of Avize, Oger, Cramant, Oiry. Their holdings are divided into 70 plots with an enviable average age of 40 years. Pascal has long been imbued with a Burgundian sensibility to make wines that reflect a sense of place. To this end he makes every effort to encourage the roots of his old vines to run deep into the mother rock to better draw out the minerality of each site. Vineyard management is painstakingly eco-friendly with chemical treatments shunned in all but the most desperate circumstances. Vineyards are ploughed to break up surface roots, aerate the soil, and encourage vital microbial life while organic fertilizers, compost, and manure are applied according to soil analyses. To ensure the utmost quality, production is kept at an artisanal scale with no more than 5,400 cases produced each year. Of course, with the firm's outsized quality and limited production, availability has become a nightmare for the domaine's growing legion of fans. All Agrapart Champagnes are scarce but their iconic vintage dated Parcellaires cuvées are among Champagne's most elusive unicorns.

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