The rise of growers (récoltant manipulants, RM) in Champagne producing wines from their own plots is no secret and has captivated us here at CWS for some time. Although big maisons and negociants are focussing greater attention in the vineyard, many through organic and bio-dynamic practises, it is the RMs who are crafting wines that show a sense of place, of their individual plots and the nuances of each growing season.
Many of these vignerons are tending some of the lesser known grape varieties of the seven permitted in the region, which is our focus for this offer. From single variety wines made with the classics of only chardonnay, pinot noir or pinot meunier, as well as a noir/meunier blend, to a pinot blanc and a cuvée of all 7 varieties, this is a snapshot of the diversity of terroirs now being articulated. All the wines selected have been sourced from the producers that have had us enthralled by their sheer quality, individuality and style – we’re sure you’ll be captivated too.
Please note we have very limited stock of the wines below, no further discounts will apply as the offer price is our best net price. To avoid disappointment, don’t delay on getting your order in.
Pierre Péters Cuvée de Reserve Blanc de Blancs (Chardonnay), Les Mesnil-sur-Oger ~ $84 Offer ($93)
Fourth generation Rodolphe Peters has been in charge of his family’s vineyards since 2008, in the sought after Grand Crus of Les Mesnil, Oger, Avize and Cramant. Made up of all 4 lieu dits including 30-40% of reserve wine from vintages back to 1988, the Cuvée de Reserve deftly walks the line between depth and precision.
There’s an openness here of elderflower, lemon zest and spun sugar, with hints of smoke and chalkiness giving great drive. This is Blanc de Blancs in its purest and most expressive form. (J.P. Sept ’17)
Pierre Gerbais L’Originale Extra Brut (Pinot Blanc Vrai) Celles-sur-Ource ~ $125 Offer ($138)
With the majority of vineyards located in the Vallee d’Ource of the Côtes des Bars, (the most southern part of Champagne) the soils here have more in common with Chablis than Avize. Made from a historic plot of 100% pinot blanc vrai vines originally planted in 1904, the wine is fermented in tank before ageing on lees for 30 months. Certified organic since 1996, Gerbais is the most revered producer of this single varietal.
Based on the 2013 vintage, the purity and underlying power from these old vines are the hallmarks of this wine. With only 3g/L dosage this is bone dry showing oyster shells and a boney minerality tempering considerable depth and power beneath. (J.P., Sept. ’17)
Jérôme Prévost La Closerie Les Béguines Extra Brut (Pinot Meunier), Gueux ~ $163 Offer ($174) – (Extremely Limited, 1 bottle per customer)
The pinot meuniers of Prévost are at the very top of our grower wish list so we’re extremely fortunate to include 6 bottles in this offer. It was the great Anselme Selosse who suggested Jérôme made wine on his own rather than sell to the negoce after he inherited 2 hectares of 40 year old meunier vines from his grandmother. 1998 was his first vintage, sharing a corner of Selosse’s cellar in Avize until 2002 when he moved vinification to his own winery in Gueux, at the foot of the Montagne de Reims. Made without additions the wine is raised in large format old oak for 18 months before disgorgment with around 2.5g/L dosage. Based on the 2014 vintage these wines will benefit greatly from more ageing in the cellar.
There’s an incredible spectrum of fruits here from wild summer berries and orchid fruits with a hint of smoke and oxidative nuttiness. Indescribable length finishing with steely and saline minerality. (K.R. Sept. ’17)
Christophe Brut Tradition Blanc des Noirs (Pinot Noir), Vallée de la Marne ~ $59 Best Price
Champagne Christophe are based in the Aube Valley in the southern climes of Champagne where pinot noir exudes a vigour and boldness rarely seen in other areas of the region. Founded in 1950 this house is now in the hands of the third generation. This grower champagne, made from 100% pinot noir offers up immediate pleasure with a ripe core of smoke, mandarin peel and wet stone. Finely framed, with an electric acidity that excites the tastebuds and carries the savoury flavours.
Bourgeois-Diaz Cuvée N Blanc des Noirs (Pinot Noir/Pinot Meunier), Crouttes-sur-Marne ~ $81 Offer ($90)
With 6.5ha of vines averaging 35 years in the far western lieu dits of Croutte sur Marne, Nanteuil sur Marne and Villiers Saint Denis, fourth generation Jérôme has been gaining much attention in champagne circles of late. Gaining biodynamic certification in 2015 vineyard practises are meticulous, setting it apart in what is generally a conventional farming area. Attention to detail follows in the winery with all fruit pressed using the labour intensive Coquard basket press with natural fermentation in both tank and neutral oak. The resulting wines are compelling with underlying depth, great purity and a real sense of place.
Lifted and vibrant red fruit aromatics and weighty but pristine red fruits in the mouth with nutty/toasty complexity, refreshing chalky mouthfeel, detailed and long. (J.P. Sept. ’17)
Laherte Frères Les 7 (Pinot Meunier/Chardonnay/Pinot Blanc/Pinot Meslier/Pinot Noir/Fromenteau/Arbane) Chavot Courcourt ~ $165 Offer ($183)
Yet again, it was the return of seventh generation Aurélien Laherte back to his family’s estate in 2002 that has really raised the interest of this true grower producer. Although the Laherte holdings are at 10 hectares across 75 different parcels it is the single plot in Chavot that is home to all 7 permitted varieties planted by his father in 2003. The first of their plots to gain bio-dynamic certification, the Les 7 is produced by picking and pressing everything together, wild fermentation and 40% made up of solera-like reserve wine dating back to 2005. There’s no dosage added either providing a wine of incredible complexity and drive.
Toasty/smokey characters add complexity to the tightly wound fruits in this wine. Displays an austerity and acid drive that leaves you wanting more. Astonishing! (K.R. Sept. ‘17)
TO ORDER: Please be mindful that our allocation of these is small. If you’d like to secure some, please click here to send a reply email or call us on (03) 9654 6657