- Item #: i_374624Bottle Size: 750mlFor the Chauvet, harmony in champagne is not just important, it is elemental. As such, they are regional champions of the art of blending Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, and they take an unabashedly classical approach in the vineyards and in the cellars. Farming their family’s 10 hectares sustainably in five of the Montagne de Reims’s 17 grand crus—Bouzy, Ambonnay, Verzy, Verzenay and Bisseuil— one feels a complex synergy to the final wines where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Long fermentations and extended élevages on the lees help develop complexity and fine aromatics, while also radically reducing the need for sulfur and eschewing the need for malolactic fermentations. In the end, their harmony in both their partnership and practice yields elegant, earthy and aromatic champagnes with a fine, satiny mousse that dances across the palate. That they are also capable of long cellar aging is a fitting legacy for a family who has endured since 1848, and whose family home in Tours-sur-Marne features an immaculately preserved salon, dating to the early 1900's.
- Item #: i_379709Bottle Size: 750MLJOHN GILMAN VIEW FROM THE CELLAR 92 POINTS-"It had been a few years since I last tasted a bottle of Agrapart’s lovely “Les 7 Crus” cuvée. The wine is really lovely, offering up a pure and complex bouquet of apple, tart pear, chalky minerality, citrus zest and fresh-baked bread. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, focused and complex, with a lovely core, elegant mousse, fine focus and a very long, zesty and perfectly balanced finish. This is one lower dosage bottling that is drinking with style and grace in its youth. 2016-2030."
- Item #: i_376767Bottle Size: 750mlTHE CHAMPAGNE GUIDE 95 POINTS - "I say 10% of the blend is from my blood!' declares Jean-Francois Clouet, who has changed the style of his family's rose to a fresher and more direct mood, not so soft, aiming for the lively impression of malic acidity, even though it goes through full malolactic fermentation. The result is arose that epitomises elegance and focus, in the midst of generous red fruits that characterise Bouzy and Ambonnay. This cuvee encapsulates the wonderful talent of Pinot Noir to build and rise on the finish, opening to wonderful characters of perfumed rosehip, pink pepper and pomegrate. An undercurrent of fine, chalk mineral texture, accurate line and persevering length define a pristine and enticingly priced rose."
- Item #: i_376905Bottle Size: 750MLWine Spectator: 90Camille Savès is a still under the radar family run Champagne house in the village of Bouzy making small quantities of fine artisanally crafted Champagne. All fruit is sourced from the family's own 25 acres of vineyards, which include Grand Cru parcels in the Grand Crus of Bouzy, Ambonnay and Tours-sur-Marne. The vines are tended according to the principles of lutte raisonée and have an average age of nearly forty years. A blend of 60% Chardonnay, and 40% Pinot Noir 12% of which is Bouzy Rouge. All the vineyard parcels for this rose are located in Bouzy and are south-facing. The base vintage is 2012 blended with 20% reserve wine. After some three years of aging on the lees this bottle was disgorged in November of 2016 with a dosage of 9 g/l. There is a delightful, delicate red berry aroma on the nose and while amply textured, harmonious palate delivers a delectable panoply of red fruits toned by ample acids and chalk inflections.
- Item #: i_374657Bottle Size: 750MLWine Spectator: 92JOHN GILMAN 92+ POINTS-"Alexandre Chartogne’s Sainte Anne bottling hails from several different lieux à dits in Merfy and is fermented in stainless steel tanks, with indigenous yeasts and the current release is comprised of a fifty-fifty blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The current release is excellent, offering the tactile seriousness on the palate that is the calling card of all of Alexandre’s wines that I have had a pleasure to taste so far, along with superb, racy structure and impressive nascent complexity. The bouquet is a blend of apple, white peach, complex minerality, gentle brioche, white flowers and a bit of high-end smokiness. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, young and beautifully focused, with a rock solid core, great cut and grip, very refined mousse and outstanding length and grip on the primary finish. This is still very early days for this superb wine, so tuck it away in the cellar for at least a couple of years and let it blossom. Fine, fine juice."
- Item #: i_377844Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 91Wine Spectator: 93"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."
- Item #: i_325121Bottle Size: 750MLAn intense, pure, authentic champagne not only made exclusively from Pinot Noir but also undosed and therefore drier and more restrained. Ideal as an aperitif or served with seafood, smoked salmon and goat cheese-based hors d’oeuvres, for example.
- Item #: i_353818Bottle Size: 750mlThis biodynamic, low-ABV red is nothing short of delicious. High-toned notes of red cherries, cranberries, crushed flowers, and pepper dominate the wine’s tart and tasty palate. The blend here is 50% Gamay from Fleurie, Syrah from Côte Rôtie, Mondeuse from Savoie, and Pinot Noir d'Alsace
- Item #: i_374658Bottle Size: 750MLWine Spectator: 90TERRY THEISE'S NOTES-"It's like the poster child for farmer fizz, the first white Ay. ..from a single vintage-2013 in this instance-[though]it is not a "vintage" wine. [Disgorged 07/17], it's one of the best editions of this wine, complex, animated almost to the point of brashness; mealy, jasmine and ginger, still a little angular but has a great future in store-in the 1-3 year range (not to mention the 35-40 year range), which you will infer from the long and savory finish."
- Item #: i_376337Bottle Size: 750mlDisgorged in July 2019, the latest release of Gaston Chiquet's NV Brut Rosé Premier Cru is showing very well, bursting with aromas of fresh peach, red berries, mint, green apples, rhubarb and pastry cream. On the palate, it's medium to full-bodied, crisp and fleshy, with a charming core of fruit, racy acids and a lingering, flavorful finish.
- Item #: i_367999Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 93Burghound: 90The cellars of Champagne Guy Larmandier are located in the village of Vertus at the southern base of the Cote des Blancs. This estate owns 9 hectares of vineyards, all located within the Cote des Blancs and distributed amongst the Grand Cru rated villages of Chouilly and Cramant and the 1er Cru rated vineyards of Vertus and Cuis.
Harvest is conducted manually, the Champagnes are aged a minimum of 36 months on the lees and the Champagnes destined for the US market are disgorged on order and receive a minimal dosage so as to emphasize the purity and finesse of this special terroir.
- Item #: i_375687Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 90A very light straw yellow color with lots of bubbles. The nose has light fresh bread, green apple, and a hint of orange. weet and succulent on the palate. Juicy apple. Creamy and warm. As it warms, it has an orange citrus feeling on the midrange. This stuff rocks.
- Item #: i_317706Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 90PETER LEIM 2 STARS -"This is 82 percent Pinot Noir from Mareuil, Avenay Val d’Or, Bisseuil and Hautvillers, blended with 18 percent Mareuil chardonnay. Over half of the blend (53 percent) is reserve wine from 2013 and 2012, and with a trio of vintages like this, it’s no surprise that this is one of the finest editions of this cuvée that Hébrart has ever produced. Generous in body yet streamlined in shape, it’s marked by a silky texture and vibrant depth of fruit, offering both a strong Grande Vallée identity and sheer delicious appeal." Last tasted: 3/17
Importer Terry calls this THE unsung hero of his portfolio.
- Item #: i_374845Bottle Size: 750MLJOHN GILMAN 91 POINTS-"Serge Billiot farms five hectares in Ambonnay, with all of his vins clairs fermented in enamel-lined tanks and not undergoing malolactic fermentation. The cépages is always at least seventy-five percent Pinot Noir, with the balance of the blend made up of Chardonnay. The current release offers up a fine nose of peach, apple, fresh-baked bread, really lovely soil tones, blossoming notes of patissière and a topnote of dried flowers. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and nascently complex, with a fine core, properly broad shoulders, frothy mousse and very good length and grip on the focused and still fairly youthful finish. This is quite tasty today, but there will be even more backend generosity here with a couple of years in the cellar. A fine example..."
WINE SPECTATOR 92 POINTS - "An elegant Champagne, featuring a firm, acidic frame, finely meshed with a detailed mousse and flavors of ripe apple, toasted raisin bread, fleur de sel, peach skin and star anise. Offers a lingering, chalk-tinged finish. Disgorged September 2014."
- Item #: i_325404Bottle Size: 750MLBurghound: 90TERRY THEISE +-"Yes, a plus. Shocked me too. This is 65% 2008, so maybe not so shocking after all. It’s unsurprisingly delicious, with ‘08’s silvery lift and a white-flower talc-y coolness. This is the best NV I’ve tasted here, and yes I did notice a small note of oxidation but I saw it as “antique” rather than decadent. And let’s remember: how many NV grower Champagnes have an 8-year old wine as the youngest year in the blend???"
- Item #: i_325470Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 93VINOUS 91 POINTS -(51% Pinot Noir, 35% Chardonnay and 14% still Pinot Noir, all from Aÿ; 9.6 g/l dosage; disgorged in February, 2014): Pale orange-pink. Bright, mineral-laced aromas of fresh red berries, blood orange and jasmine, with a subtle note of anise emerging slowly. Dry and spicy on the palate, offering nervy strawberry and tangerine flavors that unfurl with aeration. Shows very good clarity and bite on the close, leaving sexy floral and chalky mineral notes behind.
- Item #: i_335640Bottle Size: 750mlNot technically a "grower-producer," everything Huré Frères does-from philosophy to farming to production-reflects a grower mentality. The operation was formed over a half-century ago by Jeanne and Georges Huré, who later handed it off to their three sons, and Huré Frères was officially born. Brothers Jean-Marie, Marc and Raoul successfully ran and expanded the business from 1971 until 2008, when Raoul's wine-educated and world-traveled sons, François and Pierre, took the helm. They are lovers of biodynamic principles and mirror a Burgundian mindset that you're guaranteed to notice in their bottlings. The firm's "introductory" Champagne abounds with appetizing aromas and flavors of cherries, plums and toasted bread that represent a cordial invitation to dinning pleasure and conviviality. It is a pleasing mix of 15% Chardonnay, 35% Pinot Noir, and 50% Pinot Meunier based on the 2013 harvest blended with approximately 30% of reserve wines from previous vintages. It was aged up to 36 months on the lees before being finished with a dosage of 8 grams/liter.
- Item #: i_374559Bottle Size: 750mlA blend of 50% Chardonnay, 40% Meunier,this wine has an unusually fine mousse and terrific elegance, fruit and stony salinity. This is Sélèque’s flagship wine, representing nearly half of the total house production.
- Item #: i_378212Bottle Size: 750mlEdouard Labuyère, who owns an estate in Moulin-a-Vent, Château Rouget in Pomerol and is the majority shareholder in Domaine Jacques Prieur in Meursault, acquired two small estates in the Montagne de Reims Grand Cru town of Verzenay between 2010 and 2012. Both producers had previously sold the grapes from their grand cru sites to Dom Pérignon.
JAMES SUCKLING 92 POINTS-"Some quite chalky, stony aromas framed in bright red berries, this has impressive, fragrant appeal. The texture is super smooth, supple and even. Bright, strawberry and mineral finish. Drink now." (09/18)
- Item #: i_377044Bottle Size: 750MLA noble Champagne with the body of a red wine, almost chewy and very complex. A peachy blush in the glass reveals delicate bubbles. Wildflowers and strawberries on the nose; wild cherries wrapped in tender, buttery pie crust. Luscious and elegant.
- Item #: i_378902Bottle Size: 750MLWine Spectator: 90WINE SPECTATOR 90 POINTS - "Pretty strawberry, ripe cherry, lemon curd and pastry notes mix in this firm rosé, offering lip-smacking acidity, with smoke and chalk notes on the finish. Disgorged January 2013. Drink now through 2016."
- Item #: i_332410Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 92WINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS - "The NV Brut Rose Premier Cru offers an enticing floral life to its notes of mint, roses, pomegranate and sweet spices. This powerful, mineral-driven wine possesses tons of depth and personality in a vinous style that will blossom to the fullest at the dinner table. The Champagne continues to grow in the glass, suggesting it is still holding much of its potential in reserve. This is another compelling wine from Guy Larmandier. The estate’s Rose is based on the Brut Premier Cru blend, plus about 12% still Pinot from Vertus."
From writer Peter Liem: ""This estate is related to both Larmandier-Bernier, in Vertus, and Pierre Gimonnet, in Cuis, as well as to Waris-Larmandier in Avize. Guy Larmandier's brother, Philippe, was the father of Pierre Larmandier, proprietor of Larmandier-Bernier. Guy's sister, Françoise Larmandier, married Michel Gimonnet, father of Olivier and Didier Gimonnet, who run the estate of Pierre Gimonnet today. Currently the Guy Larmandier estate is in the hands of Guy's son, François. François's sister, Marie-Hélène, is married to Vincent Waris, and together they formed the estate of Waris-Larmandier, although Marie-Hélène divides her time between the two estates. Larmandier's cuvées are separated by terroir: from the vines in Vertus, Larmandier produces a non-vintage brut, packaged in a white label and composed of 90 percent chardonnay and 10 percent pinot noir. This also serves as the base for the brut rosé, made with the addition of red wine from Vertus. "
- Item #: i_378654Bottle Size: 750MLWINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS-"The latest release of Lassaigne's NV Extra Brut Blanc de Blancs Les Vignes de Montgueux is a blend of the 2016, 2015 and 2014 vintages, and is disgorged à la volée without dosage. Offering up a lively bouquet of green apples, freshly baked bread, white peach and pastry cream, it's medium to full-bodied, taut and racy, with a lively spine of acidity, lovely purity and a long, searingly chalky finish. Lassaigne characterizes this as his "apéro" cuvée—modestly, as this makes for a decidedly serious apéritif."
Jacques Lassaigne is a 4.7-hectare family vineyard located in Montgueux. The vineyards boast prime southeastern exposure and consist entirely of Chardonnay. The Montgueux vineyard sites were originally held for the Montrachet of Champagne and are located near the gates of Troyes—the former capital of Champagne. This area is technically part of the Aube department, but is much further north than what people typically think of as the Aube, in the Cote des bars which features wines often primarily made from Pinot Meunier. The terroir in Montgueux is nearly identical to the growing sites found further north in le Mesnil, as they share the same limestone vein —this is exceptional terroir for making great champagne. An intense backbone of acidity is often present in these wines, but since it is located further south than the storied Cotes des blancs, ripening is not as much of an issue. The non-vintage Blanc de Blancs is a blend of nine different vineyard sites & two successive vintages.
- Item #: i_325707Bottle Size: 750MLElodie Bosser is a fanatic about working only with best possible fruit and making sure that its quality is reflected in the finished product. A blend of 60% Chardonnay and 40% Pinot Noir, this is a forward and engaging Champagne that greets one with fresh aromas of biscuits, lemon curd and poached pears. Refreshingly crisp, but not austere in the least, the palate presents a well-meshed melange of peach, lemon drop and mineral notes followed up with a well-tapered finish of toast and baking spices. Simply put, Brut Tradition is a versatile and crowd-pleasing Champagne that exudes a class rarely found in its price range.