- 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_352326Bottle Size: 750mlIMPORTER'S NOTES-"100% Chardonnay. Dosage 8 to 9g/L. Blend of 2009 and 2010 vintages. Located in the Côte des Blancs, Bertrand Robert's family’s plots sit on some of the most prized terroir in the world, much of it in the Grand Cru territory of Le Mesnil-sur-Oger and Oger. Aromas of yeast, apple, walnut and fresh bread complemented by hints of white flowers and acacia. Complex, subtle and pure, offering precise minerality backed by citrus, stone fruit, brioche and ginger flavors. Finishes long and with a chalky texture.
It is hard not to be delighted by this bubbly’s fresh mix of white flower, acacia, and orchard fruit aromas. In the mouth this Champagne is vividly juicy and filled to the brim with ripe apple, white peach and nectarine flavors that are imbued with pervasive inflections of wet stones and seashells. The finish, which fades only with greatest reluctance, tantalizes with subtle glimmers of allspice, ginger and brioche.
The Robert family has been in the Champagne growing business for well over a century, but it wasn’t until 1961 that André Robert established the family’s own estate brand and production cellars. In 1997 André’s son Bertrand took over management of the operation. Today he farms some 27 acres split into dozens of tiny garden sized parcels. His vines average between 25-30 years of age with the lion’s share being Chardonnay planted in the Le Mesnil cru. Bertrand practices Viticulture Raisonnée, a protocol that emphasizes natural measures to control pests and rot with chemical treatments used only as a last resort. So once again, as we have seen with other top growerproducers, the quality of this Champagne is a natural outgrowth of family pride combined with generations of local knowledge along with a deep reverence for the land.
- Item #: i_374622Bottle Size: 750mlWINERY NOTES - "Generous and plentiful foam, with numerous strings of tiny bubbles. The nose is very powerful, dominated by aromas of fruits in pastry, stewed apricot, with frank notes of sugared almond. Slight notes of pepper and aniseed. On the palate, the feeling is very ample and long, with remaining pastry feeling, ending on a spicy note."
A rich yet subtle blend ot 75% Pinot Noir and 25% Chardonnay all sourced from the firm's plantings in the Grand Cru village of Ay. The blend is based on the 2013 vintage with 20% cask aged reserve wines. The wine as given a dosage of 9 grams per liter after aging on the yeast for 15 to 18 months.
- Item #: i_325701Bottle Size: 750MLThe Forest-Marie Vintage 2008 is made up of a 50/50 blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. This comes entirely from two south facing parcels Chaillots & Mont des Chrétiens of calcareous soils that have an average vine age of 67-80 years. The grapes were hand harvested and fermented in stainless steel for 20-30 days with spontaneous and cultured yeasts, malolactic was allowed to happen. After fermentation was finished, the wine was aged for 8 months with 29 mg/L of sulfur before being bottled under crown cap on March 23, 2009. This bottle was disgorged to order on August 1, 2019 and finished with a dosage of 6.85 grams per liter.
- 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_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_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_378602Bottle Size: 750mlJacques Defrance is headquartered in Les Riceys a quaint village nestled amidst the rolling hills of the Cotes des Bar half way between Reims and Chablis. Here for over a century four generations of the Defrance family have acquired and cultivated some of the area's best situated plots all the while learning more and more how get the best quality from their terrior. This valued-priced vintage Champagne is 50% Chardonnay and 40% Pinot Noir with a dosage of 8grams/liter. Harmonious and creamy on the palate with pleasing lemon curd, vanilla and ginger snap flavors. It is cast in a crowd pleasing style with excellent balance and good length.
- Item #: i_352590Bottle Size: 750mlLanson was one of the first brands to offer Rosé Champagne. In this respect, the House has over 50 years experience. Rosé derives its pink tint from the blending of the 3 classic grape varieties, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay. It is produced in the traditional way with a small amount of fine red wine made exclusively from Pinot Noir to give the wine its colour. This Lanson is composed of 50% Pinot Noir, 35% Chardonnay and 15% Meunier, with 7% Bouzy red added for color. Like all of Lanson's Champagnes, this Rose is fermented in stainless steel without malolactic fermenatation. The result is a lively pale pink Champagne that displays subtle berry flavors accented with hints of toast and nougat.
- Item #: i_376844Bottle Size: 750mlThe Nicaise family has been making Champagne for four generations from their 22 acres of vines in the Premier Cru village of Hautvilliers a town famed as the home of Dom Perignon. The quality of this grower-producer really took a major step forward in 2007 when the latest generation, Laure Nicaise-Préaux and her husband Clement Préaux, officially started working at the house to help with the winemaking. Clément apprenticed at Selosse and worked at the Mailly co-op so he came armed with great training and experience. As his father-in-law has slowly yielded more control to him, Clement has lowered the dosages and improved the overall balance in the wines. From the excellent 2012 vintage this Chardonnay dominated (80%) Brut displays an effusive array of bright orchard fruits combined with outstanding precision and length. Drinks like a vintage Grande Marque costing twice its modest price.
- Item #: i_378504Bottle Size: 750mlJOHN GILLMAN 92+ POINTS-"Benoît Marguet is now bottling many of his cuvées without any added SO2 and I worry a little about this, as his wines are so brilliantly crafted for long-term cellaring and I hope no potential longevity will end up being sacrificed because of this practice. Only time will tell. In any case, his Shaman 15 non-vintage Brut Nature bottling is outstanding, being composed of its customary blend of two-thirds pinot noir and one-third chardonnay. It was disgorged in March of 2019 and offers up a superb bouquet of white peach, apple, brioche, a complex base of soil, dried flowers and a gently smoky topnote. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, complex and beautifully balanced, with a fine core, refined mousse and lovely acid bounce adding precision and lift on the long, classy finish. This is outstanding wine. 2019-2045+."
- 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.
- Item #: i_375873Bottle Size: 750ml70% Pinot Noir, 30% Chardonnay. 2010 base vintage with 50% reserves from 30 different years.
Pierre comes from a long line of wine growers (since 1610), following Leon, Henri and Paul who transmitted this passion which is so unique of Recoltant-Manipulants, those Champagne growers who bottle and sell their wines under their own labels. Backed by these traditions and experience acquired over the years, Pierre and his wife Sophie are now developing this know-how, keeping pace with technological advances, but always remaining in harmony with nature.
Our terroir is located on the edge of Montagne de Reims. Our village, Ambonnay, is a Grand Cru Village, only one of seventeen having earned this label of excellence. On the seven acres we cultivate with care, we create seven Grand Cru vintages. Thanks to this unique soil, out Pinot Noir black grapes and our Chardonnay white grapes express their full natural richness.
- Item #: i_352140Bottle Size: 750MLWine Spectator: 91WINE SPECTATOR 91 POINTS - "A crowd-pleaser, open-knit and lightly juicy, with a lively, frothy bead. Mixes white cherry, ripe apricot, pickled ginger and mineral notes, with a fresh, spiced finish."
- Item #: i_353880Bottle Size: 750MLJOHN GILMAN 91+ POINTS-"The current [2016} release of Pol Roger’s non-vintage Brut “Réserve” is comprised of equal parts Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier and was finished with a dosage of eight grams per liter. The wine ages for a minimum of three years sur latte. The wine delivers a fine bouquet of white peach, apple, distinctive meunier floral tones, brioche, a fine base of soil and a whisper of smokiness in the upper register. On the palate the wine is pure, full-bodied, focused and racy, with a fine core of fruit, refined mousse, lovey bounce and grip and a long, well-balanced and still fairly youthful finish. I have had very good experiences aging this cuvée in my cellar (and currently have close to the case of the release from 2014 resting comfortably) and feel the current release could be another fine wine for mid-term aging, despite the wine being quite tasty to drink today. 2016-2035."
- Item #: i_373782Bottle Size: 750mlWINE ADVOCATE 89 POINTS-"Coulon's NV Brut Heri-Hodie is from a "réserve perpétuelle" and blends 60% Pinot Meunier with 20% Chardonnay and 20% Pinot Noir. The white-golden colored wine has a very delicate, elegant and fruity Meunier bouquet of red berries. The wine shows remarkable finesse and elegance on the palate and is perfectly round, delicate, very fruity and charming but dry and always stimulating. This is nearly dominated by its Meunier part. Dosed with six grams per liter, this is absolutely delicious and filigreed but with aromatic and well-structured length. So delicate and fruity! Bottled in April 2014 and disgorged in November 2017."
A Grower Champagne with incredibly giving with toasty aromas and a very delicate bead. At the same time, with enough full structure to carry you through a meal. It is especially fine for warm hors d'oeuvres and soft cheeses like St. André.
- Item #: i_364530Bottle Size: 750MLWine Spectator: 90JOHN GILMAN 92 POINTS - "Taittinger’s “la Française” bottling of non-vintage Brut is the same cépages as the wine above [i.e. forty percent Chardonnay and a sixty percent mix of Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier], but spend an additional year aging on its fine lees prior to disgorgement, so effectively, this is one year older for its base vintage. I do wish that Taittinger would join with Grandes Marques such as Charles Heidsieck and provide more technical details on their back label, as it would be nice to know the dosage and the date of disgorgement. In any case, the bouquet on the current  release of la Française is excellent, wafting from the glass in a vibrant blend of apple, white peach, fresh-baked bread, white flowers, a very good base of soil tones and just a hint of the smokiness to come with further bottle age. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, crisp 69 and rock solid at the core, with elegant mousse, excellent focus and grip, fine acidity and a long, complex finish. The extra year on the lees really adds mid-palate depth and palate presence here vis à vis the Brut Réserve. As I have mentioned in the past, the dosage for this bottling has decreased noticeably in the last few years and the wine is all the better for it, as there is a mineral precision on the backend today that is exemplary! 2016-2035."
- Item #: i_377201Bottle Size: 750mlPETER LEIM 1 1/2 STARS-"A blend of 70 percent Pinot Noir and 30 percent Chardonnay, this is fragrant and perfumed, its soft red fruit feeling voluptuous in texture and energetic in tone. This is an excellent version of this cuvée, showing an unusual detail and finesse, and it finishes with long, lively length. Last tasted: 3/17."
- Item #: i_378976Bottle Size: 750mlVINCENT COUCHE "ELEGANCE" EXTRA BRUT CHAMPAGNE, FRANCE. 85% Pinot Noir, 15% Chardonnay. (Demeter Certified Biodynamic) Vincent Couche is one of the stars of the grower Champagne movement. Located in the Cotes des Bar, Vincent is also fully Biodynamic, a rarity not just in this region, but in all Champagne. His Champagnes are especially complex due to extended lees aging. Aged five years on the lees and bottled with no dosage, this Champagne is creamy, yeasty and complex, with focused mineralty and lots of length. Terrific!