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Laherte Freres Champagne Rose de Meunier NV (R18 Disg Mar 2022)

Laherte Freres Champagne Rose de Meunier NV (R18 Disg Mar 2022)

$123.25 In any mixed 6
$145.00 per single bottle
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Tasting Notes

This is 100% old-vine Pinot Meunier from a biodynamically managed vineyard named Les Baudiers in Chavot, Côteaux Sud d’Épernay. That’s not a typo, by the way. The first vintage of this wine bore a misprint on the label and the name Les Beaudiers has been used ever since. The vines were planted in 1953, 1958 and 1965. The vineyard lies on the lower slopes of Chavot where the bedrock is hard limestone with a topsoil made up of silex and clay. The occasional vine of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Fromenteau can be found in the vineyard as well. It’s a powerful terroir that can ripen Pinot Meunier to full maturity—so much so that Aurélien’s father used to make a red wine from this area.

The fruit was de-stemmed and left to macerate for 14-16 hours on skins, followed by a natural fermentation in old oak barrels and maturation on lees (in the same barrels) for a minimum of 12 months with no malolactic fermentation. After being aged in bottle on lees for four years, the wine was disgorged by hand with around two to three grams per litre. Aurélien seeks a vinous and textured Rosé de Saignée from this potent terroir, but also one with delicacy and lift. - Importer Note

The wines of Laherte Frères bring something unique and delicious to our suite of grower Champagne. This is our first grower from the Coteaux Sud d'Epernay (slopes to the south of Epernay ) where they are certainly the benchmark. They are based in Chavot, where most of their vines are situated, but they also have some parcels in other villages of the Coteaux Sud area as well some tiny holdings in the Côte des Blancs and the Marne Valley. In total they have some 10 hectares broken up into an amazing 75 parcels.The distinctive, geologically complex terroir of Chavot and the Coteaux Sud d'Epernay in general is very different to the Côte des Blancs and Montagne de Reims areas where our other growers are based, and the style of wine is creamier and with more fruit generosity (to generalise). It's a deliciously textured and yet racy style of Champagne that quite adds another string to our Champagne bow.The vineyard practices at Laherte Frères are impressive. Most of the Estate is biodynamically farmed with the exception of those vineyards that are too far away to do so (mainly those in the Côte des Blancs and the Marne Valley). These latter sites are still managed organically, with the soils cultivated and no herbicides or pesticides used. The high standards continue in the cellar. Aurèlien uses the traditional Coquard wooden Champagne presses. He has two of these (very unusual for an Estate of this small size), which allows him to press more quickly and also to keep small parcels separate. The wines are moved only by gravity. Fermentation occurs with natural yeast and more than 80 percent of the wine is fermented and matured in large foudres and old barriques (many 10+ years of age), as all Champagne once was pre the 1950s. Interestingly Aurèlien buys barrels from Benjamin Leroux (small world!) and the Liger-Belair family (of la Romanee fame).Working with oak has a number of advantages including giving the grower the ability to have all of their different parcels fermented and matured separately. This focus on terroir expression, the use of traditional barrel ageing to help the wines express themselves, the meticulous viticulture along with the unique terroir of the Coteaux d'Epernay, are the keys to understanding these expressive and delicious wines. They are very different to anything else in our portfolio and we are sure you will enjoy them (if you haven't already). - Rob Walters

Product Type Wine Sparkling Champagne
Volume 750ml
Country France
Region Champagne
Sub Region Epernay
Winemaking Practices Minimal Intervention
Vineyard Practices Organic/Biodynamic