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(2023) The grape for which Bollinger is most famous, Pinot Noir, this comes mostly from the Grand Cru village of Aÿ and has a moderate dosage of 6g/l. It is based on the 2018 vintage, but has 50% reserve wines, including 25% of the 2009 vintage from Aÿ, aged in magnums. In the house style, 50% of the wine was fermented in oak barrels. Plenty of creamy, nutty autolysis, a meaty umami nuance, but there's a highly perfumed floral and herbal lift too. A really intriguing, multi-layered aromatic. The palate has brisk acidity, plenty of dry, pithy lemon, and core of firm Asian pear fruit. Textured and juicy, but taut in the finish, this is delightful.  
(2023) Petite Douceur is Gosset's off-dry rosé, the extra sugar combing with extra-long maturation to produce a bronze-tinged wine with rich red fruit and a delicate sweetness. The fruit is all Grand Cru, a blend of 60% Chardonnay from Avize and Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, and 40% Pinot Noir from Bouzy, Ambonnay, and Cumières. It's an assemblage, made with 7% still Pinot Noir. It's a full, raspberry and strawberry scented wine with quite robust fruit flavours and a certain umami, savoury character. The fruit and cushion of mousse fills the mouth. In truth it comes across as just off-dry, with lovely weight, texture and acidity all fleshing out and cutting through the sweetness. A deliciously well-balanced Champagne. Ocado and Waitrose online are among the stockists, though at time of review the quoted supplier has a very keen price.
(2023) This blend of 70% Pinot Noir and 30% Chardonnay from the 2015 vintage exhibits plenty of toast, hazelnut and brioche on the nose, with a peachy fruit undertow. The palate perhaps lacks a touch of verve, the fruit peachy and soft, the acidity moderate, but it is delightfully gluggable and finishes with good balance.
(2023) A more or less equal blend of the three classic Champagne grapes, aged two years, with fruit from the Marne Valley. There's a fairly deep yellow/gold hue to this. Modest bubbles rise from the glass. The nose is relatively reserved, with a little buttery biscuit and lemony fruit. In the mouth this is racy enough, though there's a sweet-fruited ripeness on the mid-palate. I find something a little bitter in the finish that detracts here, from anotherwise enjoyable wine.
(2023) Made from 100% Chardonnay, this is sourced from easterly planted vineyards in the Côtes de Blancs and stays three years on the lees. Very biscuity, those yeasty, umami notes of autolysis are nicely balanced against lemon fruit. The palate is dry - not sure of the dosage here, but seems low - allowing the citrus to power through, though always over a nutty, yeasty background. Probably my favourite wine of this trio.
(2023) This is a generous and gentle style of Blanc de Blancs, creamy on the nose, with hints of honey and acacia, a delicate beeswax filigree character. There's a sweetness on the palate, very ripe yellow plum and peach, but zippy lemon soon asserts, giving a relatively soft and crowd-pleasing style, with decent length and without doubt a harmonious balance.
(2023) It's hard to argue with Justerini's Champagne buyer, Julian Campbell, when he says: "It’s a hard act to beat at this price." From a sixth-generation winemaker whose family farm nine hectares of Pinot Noir in the Montagne de Reims, it's a blend of 40% Pinot Noir, 40% Pinot Meunier and 20% Chardonnay. Crucially however, there are around 50% of reserve wines in the blend, and it spends a full 30 months on the lees so the style is toasty and rich. Nuttiness, brioche and a lovely yeasty development join crisp green apple on the nose. In the mouth, the mousse is cushioning but fresh, the the citrus brightness of the fruit and acidity cuts through those buttery, nutty layers of development. A very fine Champagne at a good price.
(2023) New under the M&S 'Collection' label, a wine from the very good Saint Gall co-op. It is dominated by around 70% Chardonnay, with fruit from both the Côte des Blancs and the Montagne de Reims. Pouring a pale gold with good, persistent mousse, fresh baked biscuit and brioche aromas are inviting, the fruit like ripe pear and apple with light creaminess. In the mouth there is sufficient dosage to give this charm and easy appeal, but also the crisp citrus and orchard fruit has enough bite to balance very nicely. Price is £168 for six from, which works out at £28 per bottle.
(2023) With base wines fermented and aged in barrel, this was put into bottle in April 2014 and disgorged exactly five years later, with an Extra Brut 4g/l dosage. Some warmth to the colour and a lovely nose, with meaty umami and truffle depth and lots of toast underpinning lemon fruit. In the mouth there's lots of layered complexity here, a mouth-filling mousse and striking, pithy acidity, some apricot and lemon fruit, again hints of truffle and light earthiness. Finishing with a sour lemon squeeze of acidity, it's a delicious Extra Brut.
(2023) All Chardonnay, from the family's Grand Cru vineyards in Chouilly, this has a really elegant, bright and attractive nose. As well as plenty of verve and freshness there is almond and biscuit, hints of breadth too. The mousse is not too aggressive, and that lovely combination of floral and mineral clarity, backed up by creaminess and a little toast, makes for charming and delicious drinking.
Displaying results 0 - 10 of 482