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Charlot-Tanneux Expression Brut Mardeuil Champagne NV (2011)

$85.00

It is a very happy time if you’ve got a glass of this in your hand.

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Description

A small estate west of Epernay of only 6ha that is fully Biodynamically certified. Thoughtfully made wines that use oak fermentation to add richness and texture, indigenous yeast, no filtering or fining, no malo and low dosage.

This is a blend based on 2011 comprising of 70% Meunier, 20% Chardonnay, 10% Noir. 6 grams dosage and 8 months in oak. Powerful flavours and rich palate that comes from the Meunier. The other two varieties add complexity and nuance. It is a very happy time if you’ve got a glass of this in your hand. It does need a bit of attention though, it is not going to give up all it’s secrets straight away. I would be looking for a dish with a lot of textures, scallops with a pancetta crumb and thick sauce (maybe a Champagne Sabayon?).

Champagne – A wine region of France approximately 160km East of Paris. It is also the name of the wines produced from the area. Most famously it is a sparkling wine that undergoes a secondary fermentation in the bottle and is aged on lees. Although there is the occasional still wine you can find around particularly Pinot Noir. The fantastically named Bouzy Rouge is one such example. There are very few single vintage, single vineyard, single variety Champagnes (I can only name one and it was produced only 47 times between 1900 and 1999). Why? Due to the large area the region covers, and the challenging weather the houses blended wines to produce a consistent and reliable product every year. This is where the growers come in. They relish the chance to show off vintage variation and small plot wines.

Pinot Meunier – Meunier is most famous for adding body and richness to the wines of Champagne. The trade-off is it tends to make the Champagnes age quicker and is therefore often left out of Prestige Cuvées. Not often found in still table wine production.

Pinot Noir – This is the most elusive grape. It is relatively early ripening and extremely sensitive to terroir. Its perfect place on earth is the Cote d’Or in Burgundy. So haunting are great red Burgundy’s charms that growers everywhere try to emulate them. Pinot Noir is not just a one trick pony, it can make great reds, rosé, sparkling and even sweet wines, whites on occasion and I’ve tasted a decent fortified Pinot Noir too. Adding body, perfume and richness to Champagne it also adds red berry and floral/rose petal notes along with spice and subtle layers.

Chardonnay – The grape that you can plant anywhere, in any climate and do anything to and it will still taste like an OK wine. When people hit the sweet spot of site, climate, cropping and winemaking, Chardonnay becomes a magical wine that will age gracefully but charm you at any age. Chardonnays can range from cool climate lean and citrusy to warmer climate tropical and overt. Oak and lees can add flavouring as can malolactic fermentation. In a Champagne context Chard can add mineral flavours, stone fruits and acidity along with some weight of fruit.

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