Sillery, Northern Montage. Based on 2015. All steel with Malo. Very likeable stuff, showing a slightly exotically green side to its flavours – lime, white pepper, green mango, some herbs even. Nice clarity and suppleness. A good, stylish NV bottle, although there is a slightly hard, green phenolic character (especially noticeable on day 2). Picked earlyish for acidity in the hot, dry conditions of 2015? 15
75% Pinot Noir, 25% Chardonnay from this fine co-op based in the Grand Cru village of Mailly on the Northern side of the Montagne de Reims. Disgorged in 2018 with 2.3g/l dosage.
A bit of a change in style from the entry level wines here, at least with this bottle – broader, more oxidative. Roast apple, charred lemon, a meaty kind of Pinot character, some smokey woodspice. This is developing fairly quickly I think. I wouldn’t keep it too long but it’s in a good place to drink right now. 16
100% Chardonnay, 65 % oak fermentation. Disgorged Autumn 2019. I love the hedonistic style here, with lots of candied lemon, lime and yellow tropical fruits, wrapped up in white chocolate and hazelnut wafers. Just puts a smile on your face.
But there’s detail and nuance too, from interesting florals to heady vanilla/tonka. Some real grace in how the palate plays out too, even being wrapped in silky-sweet pasticceria goodness. Cin cin! 17
Summing up the vinification would take too long – let’s just say it’s unique! Lots of protection from ‘bad’ oxidation, but fermentation in small barrels for about 5 months. Chardonnay dominant, with a splash of Pinot Blanc and around 30% Pinot Nero.
Cut a slice of ripe grapefruit and beautiful Mediterranean lemon, drizzle it with Demerara and pepper then roast it until just charring..grind up some hazelnuts (you left a bit of coffee in there), then smash it up over a fresh almond croissant. Finish it off with a teeny bit of woodland savour..scrunchy leaves, a little haunting of Pinot…delicious!
It manages to shape that lovely Franciacorta fruit into something with real direction and length. The sweet nature is there, but it is honed, channelled. 18
78% Chardonnay, 12% Pinot Noir, 10% Pinot Blanc. All steel.
Sweet apple purée on opening, with some pretty raspberry tart and dried peach. It does move up a gear, though, with chocolate croissants and charred clementines completing an alluring, swish kind of nose. It hits with a little fruity paunch up front, with candied fruits and peachy sweetness coloured with smoky charred citrus marmalade. A one act show, but it’s a good one. 16.5
100% Chardonnay, steel and oak with 24 months on lees minimum. Dosage 6.5g/l
Peach yoghurt and a slightly funky jackfruit aroma on opening, then some interesting aromatics – a snap of chicory and charred lime peel veer towards herbaceousness, but talc and something lavendar-like add some intrigue. Pineapple sweets. A decent mousse, plateauing with herbal sage and lime flirting round the edges. Not totally harmonious but full of interest. Orange oil on the finish. 16
85% CH, 15% PN, Steel and some small oak.
60% PN, 40% CH, 2 years on lees. Sweet crabapple, fruit a little muted at first but opening up very slowly with some bitter herbs and grapefruit. The fruit sweetness – nectarine, raspberry – arrives after a while, tagged with a little autolytic and cut with fine phenolic details. Seems a touch charmless and anodyne compared to the others in this range at the moment. Difficult base vintage? 15.5
100% Pinot Noir. No MLF. 4.5yrs on lees, 1 yr on cork.
Creamy, alluring apple blossom and fresh raspberry/blackberry aromas, cinnamon-spiced apple and an engaging autolytic richness. Some savoury touches here, which I like – creamed mushroom and nut butter. Clarity, purity and length on the palate, although the mousse needs to settle a bit with further time. There are little nuances here – honey, dried lime, anise. So complex and engaging. Dosage hits a little front-end perhaps but bodes very well for the future. Wonderful. 17.5