Appellation Champagne (Montagne de Reims)
Varietals Pinot Noir
Vineyard Les Maillerettes is a 0.32 hectare vineyard planted by Antoine and Quentin's grandfather in in 1970. The old vines from the vineyard are used for replanting Pinot Noir on the family's parcels by way of sélection massale.
Soil Thick clay over chalk subsoils.
Viticulture Vineyards are farmed using organic methods since 2011. For the 20 years proceeding 2011, sustainable practices were used to gain a balance of soils; no fertilizers for over 15 years, natural grass covering between rows, two years to regain soil before replanting any vines. Yields are controlled.
Vinification **Antoine is beginning to experiment with cement egg fermentation. We tasted the "Vin Clair" out of egg and the wine showed great purity, minerality and exuberance.** Les Maillerettes was vinified in stainless steel using only the first press and the heart of the cuvée. After alcoholic and malolactic fermentations, the wine was kept on its lees for eight months until bottled. The champagne is aged in the cave 16 meters below ground at a constant 10°C. The combination of a second slow fermentation (2 months) and 5 years of sur lies ageing crafts a wine of balance and finesse.
Aging Aged for 60 months sur lattes. Bottled extra-brut with 1.8 grams per liter of dosage.
Production Very limited.
A wet winter and mild spring gave way to an exceptionally dry summer from mid-May onwards. Hot weather prevailed until mid-August, when the skies opened again. Rains gave way to fine, cool, yet sunny weather for the first two weeks of harvest, which commenced on August 29th. The 2015 vintage has a lot of common denominators with the 2003 vintage but the 2015s are showing a better balance of weight and freshness with their average potential alcohol level of 10.5% and total acidity of 6.9 g/l. The quality and ageing capacity of the vintage has been questioned because of the low acidity, but to me the structure of the wine is not the problem; the aromatics are. Initially as vins clairs, I found the wines to come with ample, attractive fruitiness. The vegetal, particularly ash-like aromatics were subdued but have since then become amplified, especially in the vintage bottlings. Drought issues are considered to be the culprit to these widely spread aromatic issues of the year. I have come notably down from my initial assessment. However, most vintage and prestige cuvées are yet to surface from the cellars and their quality will make or break the vintage.