(2020) For me one of the absolute 'banker' Grand Marque Champagnes, of excellent quality and yet widely available and often on discount. Shop around to find it for £25 or so, but until 2nd January 2021 it is just £21 in Tesco and that is bargain central. It's a superbly refined blend of mostly black grapes, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, with 15% - 20% of Chardonnay and 9 - 10g/l of dosage. Around 10% -20% reserve wines give depth and a certain biscuity richness, but it is a direct, focused wine with wonderfully clear fresh-cut pear fruit quality and pristine acidity. There is nuttiness and a fine line of smokiness into a long tapering finish that is very elegant, classy, but also fruity and terribly easy to drink.
(2019) From a house on the up, its wines much improved over the last decade or so, this is a Chardonnay-dominated cuvée (50%), and has around 30% of reserve wines in the blend. That along with extended ageing for three years on the lees does nothing to blunt the wine's vivacious fruitiness and freshness, but adds enough biscuit and brioche to be truly satisfying. Nicely balanced in the mouth between nutty dryness (less than 8g/l dosage) and zipping citrus fruit and acidity, it's a dependable and widely available Champagne, so there will deals around.
(2019) Based upon the 2013 vintage, dosage around 9 g/l. Biscuity, yeast complexed Pinot dominating, and a lovely yellow fruited juiciness on the mid-palate. An unconscious sipper of a wine, blink and its gone. Drink now until 2022, great quality to price ratio.
(2017) This for me was a lovely Champagne at its modest price. Made for Rude Wines by the house of Leon Launois (itself owned by Charles Mignon), its mostly Pinot Noir with a smaller percentage of Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier, and has an open, creamy, attractive character, the fine mousse and pear and lemon fruitiness joined by just a little hint of biscuit and pastry, staying sweetly focused on fruit before a good balancing acidity pushes through the finish.
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