Champagne, France, WINE

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Champagne is, without a doubt, the world's finest region for sparkling wine, and the producers here guard their brand with ferocity. What was once a catch-all term on sparkling wine labels all over the world, Champagne can now appear only on wines produced in France's most northerly AOC.

Despite the seemingly inhospitable climate, Champagne takes advantage of topography and geography to craft its magical elixir. Situated just 90 miles from Paris on a bed of chalky limestone soils, the gentle, rolling hills of Champagne are ideal for growing early ripening varietals. Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, and Chardonnay are the staple grapes, and the majority of wines are blends of two or more of these. However, some producers craft single-varietal Chardonnay wines known as Blanc de Blancs, while others make wines from one or both of the red varietals, known as Blanc de Noirs.

Traditionally, the Champagne export market has been dominated by large negociant houses such as Moët & Chandon, Taittinger, Louis Roederer, Bollinger, and Krug. In fact, these behemoth brands control only 10% of the vineyard land, and recent years have see the emergence of "grower Champagne," which refers to a number of small growers producing exceptional examples of terroir-driven wines from the AOC's grand cru and premier cru villages. Just southwest of the AOC's epicenter of Reims sit the red-dominant crus of Verzenay, Verzy, Ambonnay, and Bouzy, while further south, just across the Marne River near the village of Epernay is the Côte de Blancs, home to the impeccable Chardonnay vineyards around Cramant, Avize, Oger, and Le Mesnil-sur-Oger.

As the wines here increasingly showcase their respective terroir, and as the producers are increasingly driven by achievements of quality rather than quantity, Champagne is moving beyond the world's greatest sparkling wine region to become one of the world's greatest wine regions, period.

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95 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (Roughly equal proportions of Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, Oger, Avize and Cramant). 2007 immediately declares its magnificence, its pale straw hue and introverted demeanour promise a bright future. It's energetic in its fresh grand cru chalk mineral drive and… ...
TCG 95
WA 93
JS 93
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Delamotte Brut Champagne Blanc de Blancs 2007  (#327406)

Vintage Sparkling Wine from Vallée de la Marne, Champagne, France

[ 95 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (Roughly equal proportions of Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, Oger, Avize and Cramant). 2007 immediately declares its magnificence, its pale straw hue and introverted demeanour promise a bright future. It's energetic in its fresh grand cru chalk mineral drive and focused line and length, yet calm and relaxed, with great purity flowing in the union of white citrus, white stone fruit and subtle almond and brioche of eight years' maturity. (2016/2017) ] 95 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (Roughly equal proportions of Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, Oger, Avize and Cramant). 2007 immediately declares its magnificence, its pale straw hue and introverted demeanour promise a bright future. It's…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available
TCG 95
WA 93
JS 93
$59.95
$112.00
Save $52.05 (46%)112.00
Save $52.05 (46%)
Not yet reviewed; 2010 vintage rated 94 points and 'Outstanding' by Allen Meadows (Burghound): (dosage 6 g/L). A cool and restrained nose only grudgingly reveals its wonderfully elegant assortment of admirably pure floral, yeast, white orchard fruit, and in particular apple, and wisps of citrus. The… ...
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Dhondt/Jose Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne Mes Vieilles Vignes 2011  (#332532)

Vintage Sparkling Wine from Côte des Blancs, Champagne, France

[ Not yet reviewed; 2010 vintage rated 94 points and 'Outstanding' by Allen Meadows (Burghound): (dosage 6 g/L). A cool and restrained nose only grudgingly reveals its wonderfully elegant assortment of admirably pure floral, yeast, white orchard fruit, and in particular apple, and wisps of citrus. The middle weight flavors are very, very tightly wound and interestingly it is only with a bit of air that the superb depth begins to emerge on the crisp and notably dry and youthfully austere finish... Drink: 2022+. ] Not yet reviewed; 2010 vintage rated 94 points and 'Outstanding' by Allen Meadows (Burghound): (dosage 6 g/L). A cool and restrained nose only grudgingly reveals its wonderfully elegant assortment of admirably pure floral, yeast, white orchard fruit,…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available
93 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (30% saignée macerated fruit, 60% white, 10% red wine; of the white, 40% is 2013 reserves aged in barrels; fermented and aged for 6 months in vats, foudres and old demi-muid barrels)... Meunier speaks with bright expression of cherry, strawberry and red… ...
TCG 93
AG 92
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Laherte Freres Extra Brut Champagne Rose de Meunier NV  (#332401)

Non-Vintage Rosé Sparkling Wine from Vallée de la Marne, Champagne, France

[ 93 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (30% saignée macerated fruit, 60% white, 10% red wine; of the white, 40% is 2013 reserves aged in barrels; fermented and aged for 6 months in vats, foudres and old demi-muid barrels)... Meunier speaks with bright expression of cherry, strawberry and red apple fruit, supported by fine, glassy minerality and bright acid line--a pleasant surprise for meunier. It's youthful and vibrant, with clean focus and lively, primary expression. (2018-2019) ] 93 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (30% saignée macerated fruit, 60% white, 10% red wine; of the white, 40% is 2013 reserves aged in barrels; fermented and aged for 6 months in vats, foudres and old demi-muid barrels)... Meunier speaks…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 2 available
$39.95
$56.00
Save $16.05 (29%)56.00
Save $16.05 (29%)
100% Chardonnay (80% Mesnil-sur-Oger, 20% Bouzy). 5g/L dosage. Production: 4,800 bottles. The 2005 vintage had perfect weather conditions, with a hot summer, low rainfall, and good weather during harvest that had low nighttime temperatures allowing for both good sugard content and acidity. ...
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Clouet/Andre Brut Champagne Dream Vintage Grand Cru 2005  (#331143)

Vintage Sparkling Wine from Montagne de Reims, Champagne, France

[ 100% Chardonnay (80% Mesnil-sur-Oger, 20% Bouzy). 5g/L dosage. Production: 4,800 bottles. The 2005 vintage had perfect weather conditions, with a hot summer, low rainfall, and good weather during harvest that had low nighttime temperatures allowing for both good sugard content and acidity. ] 100% Chardonnay (80% Mesnil-sur-Oger, 20% Bouzy). 5g/L dosage. Production: 4,800 bottles. The 2005 vintage had perfect weather conditions, with a hot summer, low rainfall, and good weather during harvest that had low nighttime temperatures allowing…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available
93 points John Gilman (View From the Cellar): ...made up of a cépage of 45% chardonnay, 45% pinot noir and 10% pinot meunier. The beautiful, complex and utterly refined nose offers up a mélange of apple, lemon chiffon, chalky minerality, biscuits and lemon zest in the upper register. On the palate… ...
JG 93
AM 92
IWC 91
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Gobillard Brut Champagne Vieilles Vignes NV  (#16406)

Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Montagne de Reims, Champagne, France

[ 93 points John Gilman (View From the Cellar): ...made up of a cépage of 45% chardonnay, 45% pinot noir and 10% pinot meunier. The beautiful, complex and utterly refined nose offers up a mélange of apple, lemon chiffon, chalky minerality, biscuits and lemon zest in the upper register. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, deep and very refined, with great focus, very fine, almost ethereal mousse, bright acids and impeccable balance on the very long, very elegant finish. A tour de force! 2009-2020+. (May/Jun 2009) ] 93 points John Gilman (View From the Cellar): ...made up of a cépage of 45% chardonnay, 45% pinot noir and 10% pinot meunier. The beautiful, complex and utterly refined nose offers up a mélange of apple, lemon chiffon, chalky minerality, biscuits and…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 1 available
JG 93
AM 92
IWC 91
$59.88
$71.00
Save $11.12 (16%)71.00
Save $11.12 (16%)
97+ points Antonio Galloni (Vinous): ...striking, especially in the way it brings together elements of ripeness and freshness in a hypothetical blend of the 2002 and 2004. Smooth and creamy on the palate, the 2006 is all about texture. There is a real feeling of density and weight... All the… ...
AG 97
TCG 97
DE 97
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Taittinger Brut Blanc de Blancs Comtes de Champagne 2006  (#324810)

Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France

[ 97+ points Antonio Galloni (Vinous): ...striking, especially in the way it brings together elements of ripeness and freshness in a hypothetical blend of the 2002 and 2004. Smooth and creamy on the palate, the 2006 is all about texture. There is a real feeling of density and weight... All the elements fall into place effortlessly... Comtes de Champagne remains the single best value (in relative terms) in tête de cuvée Champagne... a magical Champagne in the making... 2016-2046. (Jul 2015) ] 97+ points Antonio Galloni (Vinous): ...striking, especially in the way it brings together elements of ripeness and freshness in a hypothetical blend of the 2002 and 2004. Smooth and creamy on the palate, the 2006 is all about texture. There is a…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available
AG 97
TCG 97
DE 97
$124.95
$199.00
Save $74.05 (37%)199.00
Save $74.05 (37%)
92 points Wine Spectator: Bright and creamy, this well-balanced Champagne offers flavors of white peach, pear, candied grapefruit zest and pastry, joined by a briny hint of oyster shell. The firm acidity presents itself as a lively zestiness that is very appealing. Drink now through 2020. (11/30/11) ...
WS 92
AM 92
WA 92
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Dhondt/Jose Blanc de Blancs Champagne Grande Reserve Grand Cru NV  (#13150)

Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France

[ 92 points Wine Spectator: Bright and creamy, this well-balanced Champagne offers flavors of white peach, pear, candied grapefruit zest and pastry, joined by a briny hint of oyster shell. The firm acidity presents itself as a lively zestiness that is very appealing. Drink now through 2020. (11/30/11) ] 92 points Wine Spectator: Bright and creamy, this well-balanced Champagne offers flavors of white peach, pear, candied grapefruit zest and pastry, joined by a briny hint of oyster shell. The firm acidity presents itself as a lively zestiness that is…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available
WS 92
AM 92
WA 92
$41.95
$64.00
Save $22.05 (34%)64.00
Save $22.05 (34%)
94 points and '100 Best Buys of the Year,' Wine & Spirits: ...We tasted the current vintage... on the same panel with the 2004 Salon, and... these were the two standouts... The Moncuit showed length and delicacy, if not the same grandeur and complexity. As one taster noted, 'It's Mesnil-y.' That… ...
W&S 94
AM 93
JG 92
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Moncuit/Pierre BdB Champagne Grand Cru Cuvee Pierre Moncuit-Delos NV  (#317335)

Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Côte des Blancs, Champagne, France

[ 94 points and '100 Best Buys of the Year,' Wine & Spirits: ...We tasted the current vintage... on the same panel with the 2004 Salon, and... these were the two standouts... The Moncuit showed length and delicacy, if not the same grandeur and complexity. As one taster noted, 'It's Mesnil-y.' That might translate into a floral lemon, Kaffir lime and chalk character, presented as density of flavor without weight. The wine's precision and effortless integration make it a steal at the price. Best Buy. (Dec 2016) ] 94 points and '100 Best Buys of the Year,' Wine & Spirits: ...We tasted the current vintage... on the same panel with the 2004 Salon, and... these were the two standouts... The Moncuit showed length and delicacy, if not the same grandeur and…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available
W&S 94
AM 93
JG 92
$39.95
$50.00
Save $10.05 (20%)50.00
Save $10.05 (20%)
91 points John Gilman (View From the Cellar): ...Avize, Cramant and Oger. The vins clairs are raised in stainless steel and do not undergo malolactic fermentation. The wine is aged three-plus years sur latte... dosage of three grams per liter and offers up a fine nose of pear, delicious apple,… ...
JG 91
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Le Brun-Servenay Extra Brut Champagne Melodie en C Grand Cru NV  (#701779)

Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Côte des Blancs, Champagne, France

[ 91 points John Gilman (View From the Cellar): ...Avize, Cramant and Oger. The vins clairs are raised in stainless steel and do not undergo malolactic fermentation. The wine is aged three-plus years sur latte... dosage of three grams per liter and offers up a fine nose of pear, delicious apple, almond, brioche, limestone minerality and a smoky topnote... bright, full-bodied, focused and complex, with lovely midpalate depth, frothy mousse, and very good balance on the long and wide open finish... 2018-2030+. (Jul/Aug 2018) ] 91 points John Gilman (View From the Cellar): ...Avize, Cramant and Oger. The vins clairs are raised in stainless steel and do not undergo malolactic fermentation. The wine is aged three-plus years sur latte... dosage of three grams per liter and…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 7 available
95 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (A blend of 2004, 2000 and especially 2002; 60% pinot noir, 40% chardonnay; no malolactic fermentation)... intricate definition of mineral texture. A calm sense of completeness sets this blend apart, capturing the wonderful succulence of white summer… ...
TCG 95
WE 94
JG 93
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Lanson Extra Age X.A. Brut Champagne NV  (#315932)

Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Montagne de Reims, Champagne, France

[ 95 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (A blend of 2004, 2000 and especially 2002; 60% pinot noir, 40% chardonnay; no malolactic fermentation)... intricate definition of mineral texture. A calm sense of completeness sets this blend apart, capturing the wonderful succulence of white summer fruits, the subtle, nuanced complexity of toast and mixed spice and the generosity of honey, all drawn together by the whip-crack of malic acidity, bringing harmony to a seamlessly persistent finish. (2014/2015) ] 95 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (A blend of 2004, 2000 and especially 2002; 60% pinot noir, 40% chardonnay; no malolactic fermentation)... intricate definition of mineral texture. A calm sense of completeness sets this blend apart,…

1.5L Magnum | In stock, 1 available
TCG 95
WE 94
JG 93
$159.95
$250.00
Save $90.05 (36%)250.00
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60% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir. The grapes for this vintage knockout are all from Grand Cru vineyards. The wine is aged 8 years on the lees before disgorgement and has a very low dosage. The aromas are reminiscent of Corton Charlemagne, with loads of brioche and puff pastry, red apples, yeast,… ...
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Godme Sabine Brut Champagne Grand Cru 2008  (#332277)

Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France

[ 60% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir. The grapes for this vintage knockout are all from Grand Cru vineyards. The wine is aged 8 years on the lees before disgorgement and has a very low dosage. The aromas are reminiscent of Corton Charlemagne, with loads of brioche and puff pastry, red apples, yeast, flowers, great acidity, and a long finish. It really shows the mark of the Verzenay terroir. Just delicious. ] 60% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir. The grapes for this vintage knockout are all from Grand Cru vineyards. The wine is aged 8 years on the lees before disgorgement and has a very low dosage. The aromas are reminiscent of Corton Charlemagne, with loads of…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 12+ available
94 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (50% CH, 40% PN, 10% PM; aged 3 years on lees; 7g/L dosage). The mineral presence of De Sousa's wines speaks loud and clear... finer in the great 2008 vintage than I've ever seen it. Beautifully pure and pristine, with a confident chardonnay lead, an… ...
TCG 94
V 91
WS 91
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de Sousa Brut Champagne Tradition NV  (#325325)

Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Côte des Blancs, Champagne, France

[ 94 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (50% CH, 40% PN, 10% PM; aged 3 years on lees; 7g/L dosage). The mineral presence of De Sousa's wines speaks loud and clear... finer in the great 2008 vintage than I've ever seen it. Beautifully pure and pristine, with a confident chardonnay lead, an air of lemon blossom, white pepper and fennel, and a crisp, fresh palate of lemon zest and granny smith apple. A delightfully refreshing and persistent apéritif style that carries soft, chalky mineral expression. (2014-2015) ] 94 points Tyson Stelzer (The Champagne Guide): (50% CH, 40% PN, 10% PM; aged 3 years on lees; 7g/L dosage). The mineral presence of De Sousa's wines speaks loud and clear... finer in the great 2008 vintage than I've ever seen it. Beautifully pure and…

750ml Bottle | In stock, 8 available
TCG 94
V 91
WS 91
$39.95
$48.00
Save $8.05 (17%)48.00
Save $8.05 (17%)
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