The rise of ‘grower champagnes’ making their way to our shores gives us that giddy feeling of a kid in a candy store. For those searching for originality and authenticity in terms of vineyard and vintage expression in Champagne, these are the holy grail. Their ability to transport you to a place and time with each sip is captivating. We’re hurriedly unpacking boxes of newly arrived ‘grower champagnes’ from some of the most sought after and thought provoking producers currently coming out of France. These wines are heavily vintage dependent, due to their small size, they don’t have the resources to hold back wines. Organic and biodynamic practices in the vineyard are preferred, and many are not afraid to pick their grapes a little riper giving the wines an extra layer of texture and flavour. They are made in minute quantities and our allocation is minuscule. Bubbles with attitude and personality!
Please note we have very limited stock of the wines below. We’re happy to offer a further 5% discount on 6 or 10% on a dozen of the bottles below, but our quantities are low. To avoid disappointment don’t delay on getting your order in.
2008 Hubert Soreau Clos l’Abbé…….SOLD OUT
Made from 100% old vine chardonnay from a rare single walled vineyard, Clos l’Abbé on the border of Epernay and the Côte des Blancs. Having worked previously for Moët et Chandon, Soreau inherited this precious vineyard from his parents. No pesticides or herbicides are used, and he tends to pick the grapes later, adding richness and depth. A unique single vineyard expression of Champagne hailing from one of the best vintages of the decade, 2008. This wine spends 7 years on lees, resulting in a refined bead and savoury tones on the palate.
‘Evocative notes of green apple, freshly baked sponge cake, fennel and sourdough thanks to its extended lees contact. On the palate it has vibrant and puckering acidity with an airy and lifted presence surrounding a core of bright and precise orchard fruit and hazelnuts. Finishes fine and long. Gabrielle Poy, October 2016
2008 Fabrice Pouillon Chemin de Bois $165…….SOLD OUT
With 17 years experience working his 6 ha of vines in prime villages of Aÿ, Mareuil-sur-Aÿ and Epernay (Montagne des Reims), Pouillon’s detailed understanding of his sites is expressed beautifully in his wines. This Chemin de Bois is a blanc de noir (100% pinot) and is made in a unique way. No sugar is added for the secondary fermentation, rather a portion of grape juice is blended to the vin clair which initiates another fermentation. It is then bottled under cork where it continues fermentation; gaining complexity and texture from 8 years on lees.
‘Red and black currants with licorice root and sweet spice lead into a tightly coiled and focussed palate. Tempering savoury notes of sea salt spray and freshly baked pastry flesh out midway before a salivating acidity sweeps through.’ Gabrielle Poy, October 2016
NV Emmanuel Brochet Le Mont Benoit $122…….SOLD OUT
Based in Montagne de Reims, Brochet farms 2.5ha of vines all within the lieu-dit (single vineyard) of Le Mont Benoit. Working organically with vines dating back to 1962, this NV comprises 80% of the superb 2012 vintage with the remainder coming from 2011. A blend of chardonnay, pinot meunier and pinot noir, the base wines are fermented in old oak, adding breadth to the palate whilst remaining extraordinarily fresh and composed. Brochet is a deft hand and master of puzzling together smaller parcels of different grapes that synthesise beautifully.
‘Lifted and energetic notes of roasted fennel, orange pith and wet stone. On the palate there is fine and chalky texture with a lilting bubble that rolls gently across the mouth. The palate finishes with a dry and driving acidity.’ Gabrielle Poy, October 2016
Jerome Dehours Grande Réserve $100…….SOLD OUT
One of the larger growers, working with 14ha across 42 parcels in the Vallée de la Marne, Dehours sells a lot of fruit to negociants, enabling him to concentrate more on his own wines. This is pinot meunier dominant, along with 30% chardonnay and 10% pinot noir. The base of the material is youthful and fresh, hailing from 2013. This freshness is offset by an addition of 30% reserve wines that date back to a solera started in 1986!
‘Umami tones of smoked meats, spice and crushed rock are followed by a dry, slatey, finish. This has a core of richness that is balanced by a composed acidity and effortless length.’ Gabrielle Poy, October 2016
NV Alexandre Filaine Cuvée Confidence $117…….SOLD OUT
By day Fabrice Gass is a winemaker at Bollinger. He never wanted to sell his own wines, preferring to keep them for himself to drink with friends. Organically working, just 1ha of vines over 7 parcels in the southern part of Montagne des Reims, his production is tiny. A mix of the stylish 08 vintage and richer 09, this blend of the three grapes has a certain resemblance to Bollinger’s style; exemplary richness and depth framed by acidity. The base wines are matured in old Bollinger casks and the wines see secondary fermentation under cork, adding amplitude and charisma.
‘Delicious notes of crème brûlée and roasted cashews lift from the glass. On the palate its velvety richness and breadth is held together by a subtle herbal freshness and a very fine and suave composure.’ Gabrielle Poy, October 2016
2008 Alexandre Filaine Sensuum Vertigo $165…….SOLD OUT
The second release of this wine, only 500 bottles are made (of which just 12 make it to Australia). A blend of 55% pinot noir, 30% chardonnay and 15% meunier, it is aged for 7 years on lees. Lowly dosed at just 4grams, it is quite steely and rigid in its youth but shows endless promise, especially hailing from the 2008 vintage! Its compact core needs time to unfurl. Put it away for a few years at least.
NV Marie-Noëlle Ledru Grand Cru Brut $89……SOLD OUT
Working only 2 ha in the Grand Cru villages of Ambonnay and Bouzy in the Montagne des Reims (unfortunately her holdings have diminished due to family disputes), Ledru is a fastidious worker; all her cuvées are hand disgorged and no chemicals are used in the vineyards. Based on the exemplary 2012 vintage, this pinot noir dominant champagne with a 15% chardonnay addition exudes purity and finesse. The power and elegance of pinot is on display. Ultra-fine mousse with creamy sherbet overtones and piercing nervosity.
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