"This Vertus domaine numbers among my favorite addresses on the Cote de Blancs, and the Doyard family's vinous, incisive Champagnes deserve a place in any well-stocked cellar. Deep, concentrated and characterful, everything that bears the Doyard label is well worth serious attention." - William Kelley, The Wine Advocate.
The Doyards trace their roots in Champagne back to the 17th century. Maurice Doyard was the first in the family to make wine in the village of Vertus, officially signifying the domaine's foundation. In 1979, at the ripe old age of 20, Yannick Doyard took over the estate, quickly turning it into a beacon for precise, mineral-etched Champagnes they're known for today. They employ a 'non-dogmatic' approach to biodynamic farming, utilizing absolutely no herbicides or pesticides, and most vineyards are still worked by horse.
Doyard's "Vendemiaire" is an entry-level Champagne in name only, as this forty-dollar bubbly easily rivals Grande Marque fare commanding twice its modest price. From 45+ year-old Chardonnay vines primarily in the village of Vertus, along with parcels in Le Mesnil-sur-Oger Grand Cru, Oger Grand Cru, Avize Grand Cru, and Cramant Grand Cru, this year's cuvee is based on the 2014, 2013, and 2012 vintages. Only 15% malo, the vins clairs are aged in older Burgundy barrels before a remarkable 60-months (quite a lot for an entry-level cuvee!) sur lie prior to release.
WINE SPECTATOR 93 POINTS - "Firm acidity and a chalky underpinning create a snappy, lip-smacking frame for the flavors of baked white cherry, star anise, ground ginger, chopped almond and biscuit. Finely meshed and harmonious, with the flavor range carried on the delicate, creamy mousse. Drink now through 2024."AN (12/19)
WINE ADVOCATE 91 POINTS - "The forthcoming release of the NV Brut Blanc de Blancs Cuvée Vendémiaire is based on the 2014 vintage and was disgorged in September 2019, so it's arriving on the market now. Revealing an inviting bouquet of orchard fruit, warm bread, oyster shell and pastry cream, it's medium to full-bodied, pillowy and charming, without quite the same incisiveness of the 2013-based cuvée, concluding with a saline finish."