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Very regal toastiness across a bright and fresh lemon-infused nose, with some lemon custard here, too. The palate continues the citrus theme with smooth lemon curd flavors. Acidity draws it into pithy grapefruit-flavored territory. Cracking fresh finish. Drink around 2020."
93 Points James Suckling
This beautifully refined prestige cuvée is 80% Chardonnay and 20% Pinot Noir, all from Grand Cru villages.
Ayala currently owns 35 acres in Champagne. Thanks to its privileged location in the heart of the Grand Crus of Montagne de Reims and their link to Bollinger, they also have unique access to top quality grapes.
Everything from grape reception to vinification, aging, riddling and disgorgement is done at the Ayala cellars. The Cuvée Perle d’Ayala rests in the cellar for 8-9 years after disgorgement under cork (not crown), in order to allow for controlled oxidation and development of complex aromas and flavors. This is a very rare practice in Champagne today.
A cold winter and springtime frosts laid the foundations for this vintage of abundant yields (12,997 kg/ha). Uneventful flowering was followed by exceptionally hot and sunny weather, which lasted until August. A dank August left producers fearful but fortunately warm, bright conditions in September redressed the balance. Harvest commenced on September 9th, producing grapes high in sugar level but notably low on acidity. The general health of the grapes was sufficient, producing wines which excel over the preceding 2005 vintage, another warm and ample year. The year's greatest wines are supple and expressive and despite the richness they escape being overly heavy. Overt and welcoming upon launch, the best come with excellent capacity for ageing. Winey, and richly fruity characters, most Champagnes regrettably miss some tension and finesse. Wines of the vintage include Taittinger Comtes de Champagne, Krug Vintage and Dom Pérignon Rosé.