Lallement

Jean Lallement (Lall-Mont) is an estate of only four hectares split between Verzenay and Verzy in the Montagne de Reims. A tiny producer, one of the smallest in this portfolio, but what wines! Original, complex, distinctive and yummy, all from a young vigneron who’s restlessly improving every year. The vineyards are spread between Verzenay and Verzy both Grand Cru villages. Alex Lallement explained the terrior of Verzenay as more masculine and higher in elevation, while Verzey is more feminine and perfumed. The majority of Lallement’s holdings are in Verzenay whos charateristic flavor Lallement’s virile style exemplifies. If it were Burgundy it’d be Nuits-St.-Georges; animal and sauvage. It’s 80%/20%, Pinot Noir/Chardonnay, as you’d expect in these parts. There are twenty different parcels, about half of which are older than 30 years.

Lallement allows all of his wines to undergo malolactic fermentation and now produces 4 wines. His Brut is a blend of two years from younger vines in his holdings in Verzenay and Verzey, about 80 percent and 20 percent respectively. The Brut Reserve is the same blend of vintages and villages, but from parcels that are 30 years and older.

Lallement started making a Réserve Rosé in 2003. It’s a non-saignée, 100 percent Pinot Noir Rosé, a proportion of which is still red wine vinified in 205 liter barrel. 1800 bottles of the Rosé are produced.

For the first time, Lallement will release a Vintage Champagne (2006) which will be available in minute quantities. Only 750 bottles of the 2006 were produced and demand will far exceed availability.

These are all magnificent, original Champagnes. They’ll be very scarce (150 cases or so, per year). Grab them!

Lallemont Label

Available Wines

Lallement N.V. Brut

I call this old green. It sounds like some dawg from a children’s Disney movie, doesn’t it? First take a Champagne of exceptional polish and detail. Then take a Champagne of amazingly distinctive terroir, redolent and atmospheric. Then drink, and understand why it’s my personal favorite Champagne in my own portfolio, and a poster child for farmer-fizz. I hedge the plus only because the wine I tasted was clearly concussed from 12/09 disgorgement. Still, it showed the loveliest melisse and sorrel aromas, and a suavely nutty finish (walnuts), and there were herb-oil notes I’d never tasted before. As always, this is 80% PN and 20% CH, and this disgorgement is 80% ’06 and 20% ’07.

Lallement N.V. Brut Rosé

The Rose Brut is 100% Pinot Noir from the 2009 vintage. The wine undergoes malolactic fermentation before spending 48 months sur latte. The Lallement Rose Brut is all Pinot Noir from one vintage, despite being labeled N.V. The fruit is from Verzenay, and the wine includes 9% still Pinot Noir vinified and aged by David Pehu.  ~Terry Theise