As many of you discovered these are blow-your-mind Champagnes; you sold them out in a flash! Crystalline, jewel-like firmness and immense mealy depth give these a Krug-like profile nearly unique among Blanc de Blancs. Let’s put it this way: if Blanc de Blancs Champagne has something in common with Mosel wine in general, then these are like Saar wines, a concentration of the minerally essence of the type, and straining at the leash as though the fruit wanted to burst free and run at full gallop. Lately I have described the wines as starched, for they have that crisp stiffness. Though not exceptionally high in acidity, they are exceptionally low in pH, which gives them their attack on the palate and their trilling high notes of aroma. My best German wine customers tend to prefer these to any Champagne I offer. ~Terry Theise
In principle this wine is always half of the prevailing year—in this case 2012—and half of the previous year’s blend. So there are always multiple vintages in the mix, and some rather mature wine. He calls it a “perpetual reserve” and is not the only one to do it. I’ve heard it called a Solera but it isn’t quite.
Vintages vary in the Côte des Blancs perhaps more widely than elsewhere in Champagne, and the last two iterations of this wine were marked by 2010’s greenness and then by 2011’s 2011-ness. The new edition was disgorged 12/2014, with very low dosage; it has the ripe straw of ’12 but also some of the greenness of ’11 and ’10. It’s the best of the last few years, but I want to see what it morphs into. One judges by the finish: is it warm, does it concentrate, is it malty? The question isn’t whether the wine will catch up, but when—and will it have been drunk up by then? ~Terry Theise