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Roland Champion Grand Cru Champagne Blanc de Blancs NV

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 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 91 Wine Enthusiast: 92 Wine Spectator: 92 International Wine Review: 92 93 Points
Country:France
Region:Champagne
Winery:Roland (Champagne Champion)
Grape Type:Chardonnay
Vintage:NV
Bottle Size:750 ml
Product Description

Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blancs NV is aged for minimum 30 months (the minimum for NV is 15 months). This cuvee is made from 100% Chardonnay and is produced from the free run juice only. The current release is the result of the blend of the 2005, the 2006 and the 2007 vintage.
Fresh and delicate, its fine bubbles and wide range of aromas will be perfect as an aperitif. This Champagne will also match very well with seafood and shellfish.

dosage : 8 grams per liter
ageing : 30 months on laths
Even if it doesn't say on the label, 100% of the production is RD (Recently Disgorged)
Total Production for this Cuvée : 1,500 cases (9 liter equivalent) per year
 

Reviews:

"(L40): Light yellow-gold. Musky pear and peach pit aromas are enlivened by notes of lemon zest and chalk. Weighty but energetic, offering powerful orchard fruit flavors and hints of candied fig and lemon curd. The pear skin quality comes back strong on the clinging finish. This powerful Champagne is definitely better suited for duty at the table than for serving by itself. - Josh Raynolds" - Antonio Galloni's Vinous (Dec 2012), 91 pts


- Roger VOSS"

Wine Enthusiast (December 1st 2019), 92 pts


"Golden yellow color. Lively, fruity, toasty leesy aromas of honeyed brioche and apple tart with a satiny, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a sleek, interesting, snappy lemon curd, nougat, and chalk finish with silky, soft, fruit tannins. A classic example of blanc de blanc champagne, delicious."
- Beverage Testing institute , 93 pts

"Spiced with ground anise and ginger accents, this offers notes of poached pear, lemon meringue pie, hazelnut and stony mineral. Very elegant and well-meshed throughout, with a silky finish.  Tasted twice, with consistent notes. 1,500 cases made. –AN"
- Wine Spectator  92 pts

"This cuvée made from 100% Chardonnay offers a fresh aromatic nose of light toast, dried yellow fruit and nuances of yeast. On the palate it has a creamy mouth feel of toasted nuts and rich autolytic notes. This is a beautiful wine, rich and complex."
International Wine review  92+ pts



"Small grower. Autumn fruits dominate the aromas of this wine, which is blatantly more like a wine than we normally expect a champagne to be. Some may find that unexpected and even off-putting, while others will find it intriguingly delicious."
- Washington Post  - EXCELLENT

"Roland Champion is a small family-owned producer, now with the fourth generation, in the village of Chouilly (”shoo-ee”), which has only Grand Cru vineyards. Made from 100 percent chardonnay grapes, this Champagne offers ethereal grace and poise and harmony; if I were fighting a duel tonight, I would ask for this Champagne as my last beverage. The nose here is about the richness of warm biscuits and hazelnuts, dried fruit and spice, like a Platonic, ineffably light fruitcake; in the mouth, however, it’s about a structure that encompasses an incredible marriage of power and elegance, like the delicacy and strength of the finest bone china. And there’s something porcelain-like about this Champagne, in its notable crisp, lively character, its transparency and its slightly chalky, shale-like mineral elements. Forget the Champagnes that come on with heavy toasty, caramel qualities; here, instead, is a wealth of subtlety and nuance touched with a racy, dynamic edge. Exceptional."
Biggerthanyourhead.net 

Winery: Roland (Champagne Champion)

The Champagne Champion Roland Estate
This small grower is located in the Grand Cru Village of Chouilly, in the `Cote des Blancs`. The vineyard of Chouilly has a south, southeast sun exposure, which gives the chardonnay its delicate aromas.
Founded in 1951 by Andre Champion, his son Roland expanded the company by purchasing some new land, and gave his name to the family house of Champagne. François is the third generation of the family and continues in his father’s footsteps. He is the enologist and currently runs the company. He farms their 18 hectares (44.5 acres) and blends wines resulting from different parcels and various vintages to elaborate his Cuvees.
The property consists of 40 different parcels planted with the following grape types:

  • Chardonnay: 70%
  • Pinot Meunier: 22%
  • Pinot Noir: 8% in the commune of Verneuil

The grapes are harvested manually, which is the rule in Champagne. Then, the grapes are immediately pressed in-site to avoid oxidation and preserve the quality of the grapes.
The wine is aged in their cellar made of chalk where the constant temperature is 1012°C (50/54°F).

Production is 85,000 bottles (7,000 cases) yearly, part of which is sold “sur latte” to negociants. The remaining 35,000 bottles are sold under their own name.

They produce the following wines:
NV Brut, Blanc de Blanc: 25% of production
Vintage Champagne, Speciale Club Carte Noire: 70% of production
Rose Brut: 5% of production

Currently, all wines are 90% pre-sold to an adoring French clientele. Daughter Carole Champion represents the fourth generation to continue with the property.

 

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Domaine de l'Ecu Muscadet Orthogneiss 2018

Domaine de l'Ecu Muscadet Orthogneiss is made from 100% Melon de Bourgogne sourced from a 3 hectare vineyard.
Sub-soil: Orthogneiss
Yield: 45-50 hl/haSoil ploughing and soil scraping. Canopy management.
PRUNING: Simple Guyot.
Orientation of slopes is SOUTH EAST. Soil is granulous and not very deep. Sub-soil: Orthogneiss.
Production: 555 cases
It is the color of white gold and crystal clear. The nose is subtle and elegant with the zest of citrus fruits, white flowers and spices such as ginger and cumin and there are notes of flintstone, dried fruits and toasted almonds. The attack is sharp and straight, the mouth is complex, an impression of great purety and rare elegance; very salty notes, chalky and slightly smokey notes and notes of citrus fruits, a wine with the ability to be kept for a long time.

Organically farmed since 1975. Biodynamic – Demeter certified since 1998. 100 % hand-picked grapes Reception of the grape harvest by gravity, no use of pumps. Pneumatic gentle press No racking of the must Fermentation: 100 % natural yeast • Temperature control: 15 °- 17 °. Aged "ON THE LEES" in underground vats

A perfect match to the following dishes: 

Asian cuisine, fish curry,
Thai white rice, cucumber raita.
Snail Casserole Sole meunière & steamed crispy vegetables.
Brittany Lobster, wine and brandy reduction, puréed sweet potatoes with star anise.
Scallops in spicy breadcrumbs.
Scallops flambéed in whisky.
Spicy prawns, coriander cream.
Chicken Colombo.


Review:

"Tightly wound and very savory, with a core of lemon zest and honeysuckle flavors, while tangy fleur de sel and oyster shell notes give this intensity on the finish. Pure, showing impressive length. Drink now through 2026. 1,000 cases made, 100 cases imported. - AZ”
- Wine Spectator (December 2019), 91 pts

"One of a pair of wines named after the rock of the vineyard, this offers great fruitiness, crisp lemon and a mineral edge that balances with the wine's fresh character. It is a delicious wine, still developing, ready from late 2019. - ROGER VOSS”
- Wine Enthusiast (October 2019), 91 pts

 Wine Enthusiast: 91 Wine Spectator: 91
Bernardins Dry Muscat Dore des Bernardins 2019

Bernardins Dry Muscat Dore des Bernardins is made from 100% white Muscat petit grains.

Doré des Bernardins is a dry white wine that is only produced in years when the Muscat à petit grains crop is large enough. Grapes are picked at the same ripeness level as for the Vin Doux Naturel. In contrast to Muscat de Beaumes de Venise, the fermentation isn’t stopped, giving a fruity dry wine with intense Muscat aromas.
Dry Muscat with a fruity, nice perfume, honeysuckle and melon aromas, lively rounded mouth-feel. Elegant, fresh and medium-bodied.

Situation

Spreads out over the south-east side of the Dentelles de Montmirail hills, in Beaumes de Venise in the southern part of the Rhone valley.

Terroir
On a poor sandy, hungry and arid soil consisting of tender limestone and gritty zones of sandy mollasse.

In the vineyard
The vineyards and their terroir are the essence of our wines. This is where everything starts and where we focus our efforts throughout the year. You can’t make great wine without great grapes.

The viticulture is essentially done by hand. Five people work full-time in the vineyards. They are supplemented by seasonal employees who work during bunch thinning and the harvest in order to bring out the very best in our vines. Working by hand and the attention each vine gets are fundamental. Pruning, de-budding, trellising, leaf removal and picking are thus carried out by hand with the utmost care.

We prepare the soil by using good old-fashioned ploughing. Organic compost is made from grape marc (the discarded stalks and skins).

As a way of protecting the plants, we only use phytosanitary products when necessary and within strict guidelines by staggering the treatments appropriately, to minimise the amount of chemicals used. We prefer to use as much as possible manual and organic techniques. Leaving natural grass cover, removing buds and leaves from the vines, preserving biodiversity around the vineyard: olive, almond and cypress trees, wild rosemary and capers.

Winemaking
Our Doré des Bernardins is a dry white wine that we only produce in years when the Muscat à petits grains crop is large enough. We pick the grapes at the same ripeness level as for the Vin Doux Naturel. In contrast to Muscat de Beaumes, the fermentation isn’t stopped, giving a fruity dry wine with intense Muscat aromas.

Nicely chilled, this dry white wine is great as an aperitif or with asparagus, seafood, king prawns, fish.

Grand Veneur Cotes Du Rhone Les Champauvins 2018

HUGE SALE!

Grand Veneur Cotes Du Rhone Les Champauvins is made of 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah and 10% Mourvedre

Intense, brilliant garnet-red colour. It reveals lovely fruit, loads of body and a heady bouquet of ground peppers, raspberries cherry liqueur, currants, and spice box. Full-bodied and dense, it tastes more like a "baby Châteauneuf" than a Côtes du Rhône.
A complete wine, rich and elegant, thanks to the harmony of all the elements which make it up.

Drink between 1 and 6 years.

Soil type DOMAINE GRAND VENEUR “Les Champauvins” stretches on 34 ha classified in Côtes du Rhône. The plots are located in the northern border of Châteauneuf du Pape, exactly from 3 meters outside the appellation. A small lane of rocks going through the rocky plateaux has been decided to be the AOC limit in 1936. Here, soils are made of red clay and rocks (pebbled stones of quartz). The quantity of rocks can be amazing as they can completely cover the soil (see picture). In summer and during the day, the rocks temperature will increase to 55°C. This accumulated heat will be get back to the vines during nights . Day after day, this unique phenomenon allow the grapes to reach a perfect maturity and produce a unique wine. Winemaking & Ageing Traditional, in stainless steel vats. Harvest crushed and destemmed. Fermentation in temperature controlled vats at 28°C. Eighteen-day vating period with “pigeage”. Grenache is aged in concrete vats, Syrah and mourvèdre in 4 years old barrelsntense, brilliant garnet-red colour. It reveals lovely fruit, loads of body and a heady bouquet of ground peppers, raspberries cherry liqueur, currants, and spice box. Full-bodied and dense, it tastes more like a “baby Châteauneuf” than a Côtes du Rhône. A complete wine, rich and elegant, thanks to the harmony of all the elements which make it up.

 


Review:


"Not yet bottled, the 2018 Côtes Du Rhône Les Champauvins offers slightly darker notes of cassis, blackberries, ground pepper, violets, and spring flowers. Soft, forward, and straight-up plump, it shows the fleshy, ready-to-go style of this vintage beautifully."

- Jeb Dunnuck (August 16th 2019), 88-90 pts

 90 Points
Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 2012

Importer Sale!

Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 100% chardonnay.

Champagne with rich and structured aromas. Very pleasant and generous roundness, nice length in mouth. Golden color with buttery and fruity aromas. All the expression of a magnificent terroir for your most pleasurable moments.

Review:

"Smoky pear and lemon meringue introduce the Carte Noire Blanc de Blancs. On the palate, it offers ripe citrus, rich apple in butter pastry, and an uplifting note of lemon curd with lovely mid-palate depth, fine effervescence, and brisk acidity that provides a successful counterbalance to the richness of the fruit. The finish is solidly dry with lingering rich fruit notes. All Grand Cru Chardonnay from Chouilly; spends 6+ years en tirage. Outstanding value for the price, too."
- I-WineReview (Champagne: Diversity and Change, January 2020), 94 pts

- Wine Enthusiast (December 1st 2019), 93 pts & Editor's Choice –Roger VOSS"


 Wine Enthusiast: 93 94 Points
Alain Jaume Domaine du Clos de Sixte Lirac 2016

Closeout!

Alain Jaume Domaine du Clos de Sixte Lirac  is made from 50% Grenache, 35% Syrah, 15% Mourvedre

An intense red garnet color. On the nose, aromas of red and black ripe fruit (kirsch and wild blackberry). The mouth is full, with aromas of blackcurrant liqueur and spice. Tannins are both harmonious and elegant thanks to the fleshiness of the wine. Hints of licorice and vanilla on the finish, which gives the wine length and complexity.

Soil type LIRAC vineyard is facing Chateauneuf du Pape, opposite side of the Rhône river. As showed by the picture and following geologist George Truc, soils are almost similar in both side. They are marked by the violence wrought by the Rhone river. It consists of a layer of marine molasses of the Miocene period covered by alpine alluvium. The presence of a great number of rounded stones known as "galets" in the earth is evidence of the time when the Rhone, then a torrent, tore fragments of rock from the Alps and deposited them on the plain. LIRAC is one of the up-coming best area from the southern Rhône valley, as it delivers outstanding wines. Winemaking & ageing Traditional wine-making in stainless still vats. Hand sorted bunches, crushed and destemmed grapes. Fermentation temperature : 30°C. 18 days of vatting with pigeages.

 


Review:

"The 2016 Lirac Domaine du Clos de Sixte is a terrific wine, easily the rival to many Châteauneufs from across the river, starting with its alluring aromas of flowering garrigue and ripe cherries. A blend of 50% Grenache, 35% Syrah and 15% Mourvèdre, this full-bodied wine is lush and concentrated on the palate, then turns velvety on the long finish. I'd treat it like a Châteauneuf du Pape in terms of cellaring: hold it for a few years, then drink it over the next 15. - Joe Czerwinski"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue 233, October 2017), 93+ pts

 Wine Advocate: 93
Roland Champion Champagne Brut Rose Grand Cru NV (magnum)

Roland Champion Champagne Brut Rose Grand Cru - NV (magnum) is amde from 20% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Meunier, 40% Pinot Noir

Orangy color due to a red wine of matured base. The pinot meunier reserve wine gives to this champagne red fruit cocktail, raspberry, and a slightly spiced strawberry taste
The harmony between 3 grapes offers a gourmand and generous nose.

Review:

"Eye of the partridge color. With a bouquet that evokes leesy hints of red cherry and berry with a touch of stone fruit, this is a finely sculpted wine, beautifully balanced with rich flavors of cherry, shortbread,and a hint of honeyed apricot. A rosé Champagne that’s complex and dry with good palate depth and length. A blend of 20% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir, and 40% Pinot Meunier; 7-85% of the juice is red wine (Pinot Noir) from 2013 vintage of Coteaux Champenois Rouge from the village of Verneuil. 3+ years on the lees." - I-WineReview (Champagne: Diversity and Change, January 2020), 92 pts 


"A delicate, subtle Champagne, delivering aromatic notes of mulling spices and yeast that accent the flavors of kirsch, bread dough, candied lemon zest and rose petal. This is finely tuned, with lively acidity and a minerally finish. 330 cases made. –AN"
- Wine Spectator , 91 pts

"Bright orange. Aromas of blood orange, dried rose, allspice and minerals, with a subtle note of anise. Juicy and precise, with very good depth to its spicy red berry and citrus pith flavors. Finishes smooth and long, with excellent clarity and lingering spiciness."
- Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar , 91 pts


"Champion is a small grower in Chouilly, in the Cotes des Blancs, an area known for fantastic chardonnay. This rosé — of which he makes only about 330 cases — includes 10 percent red wines (pinot noir, pinot meunier) to give it a pale, salmonlike color and a beguiling palate of cranberries, strawberries and currants. Wow. And yum."
-  Washington Post, ***






 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 91 Wine Spectator: 91 International Wine Review: 92
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Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 2012

Importer Sale!

Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 100% chardonnay.

Champagne with rich and structured aromas. Very pleasant and generous roundness, nice length in mouth. Golden color with buttery and fruity aromas. All the expression of a magnificent terroir for your most pleasurable moments.

Review:

"Smoky pear and lemon meringue introduce the Carte Noire Blanc de Blancs. On the palate, it offers ripe citrus, rich apple in butter pastry, and an uplifting note of lemon curd with lovely mid-palate depth, fine effervescence, and brisk acidity that provides a successful counterbalance to the richness of the fruit. The finish is solidly dry with lingering rich fruit notes. All Grand Cru Chardonnay from Chouilly; spends 6+ years en tirage. Outstanding value for the price, too."
- I-WineReview (Champagne: Diversity and Change, January 2020), 94 pts

- Wine Enthusiast (December 1st 2019), 93 pts & Editor's Choice –Roger VOSS"


 Wine Enthusiast: 93 94 Points
Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 2013

Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 100% chardonnay.

Champagne with rich and structured aromas. Very pleasant and generous roundness, nice length in mouth. Golden color with buttery and fruity aromas. All the expression of a magnificent terroir for your most pleasurable moments.

Review:

"Based in Chouilly on the Côte des Blancs, it is obvious this producer will have a Blanc de Blancs Champagne. And very good it is, with some age after six years on lees while still having freshness, crisp acidity and a tight, steely edge. The bottling will benefit from further aging, and it will be at its best from 2022. - ROGER VOSS"
- Wine Enthusiast (December 2020), 92 pt




 Wine Enthusiast: 92
Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 2013 (imperial 6 liter)

This is a 6 liter imperial also called a Methuselah.

Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 2014 is made from 100% Grand Cru Chardonnay from the chalky soils of Chouilly.

This Champagne is full of elegance and finesse. Very complex nose, with a bouquet of aromas dominated by honey, brioche and notes of dried fruits, hazelnuts and sweets. Perfectly matured.

Manual harvest; then pressing immediately to avoid oxidation & preserve quality. Free run juice only. Aged six years on the lees.

It matches magnificently with foie gras!

Review:


"Based in Chouilly on the Côte des Blancs, it is obvious this producer will have a Blanc de Blancs Champagne. And very good it is, with some age after six years on lees while still having freshness, crisp acidity and a tight, steely edge. The bottling will benefit from further aging, and it will be at its best from 2022. - ROGER VOSS"

- Wine Enthusiast (December 2020), 92 pt

 Wine Enthusiast: 92
Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 2013 (Jeroboam 3 liter)

This is a 3 liter double magnum also called a Jeroboam.

Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 2014 is made from 100% Grand Cru Chardonnay from the chalky soils of Chouilly.

This Champagne is full of elegance and finesse. Very complex nose, with a bouquet of aromas dominated by honey, brioche and notes of dried fruits, hazelnuts and sweets. Perfectly matured.

Manual harvest; then pressing immediately to avoid oxidation & preserve quality. Free run juice only. Aged six years on the lees.

It matches magnificently with foie gras!


Review:

"Based in Chouilly on the Côte des Blancs, it is obvious this producer will have a Blanc de Blancs Champagne. And very good it is, with some age after six years on lees while still having freshness, crisp acidity and a tight, steely edge. The bottling will benefit from further aging, and it will be at its best from 2022. - ROGER VOSS" 

- Wine Enthusiast (December 2020), 92 pt 


 Wine Enthusiast: 92
Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 2013 (Salmanazar 9 liter)

This is a 9 liter imperial also called a Salmanazar .

Roland Champion Champagne Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru 2014 is made from 100% Grand Cru Chardonnay from the chalky soils of Chouilly.

This Champagne is full of elegance and finesse. Very complex nose, with a bouquet of aromas dominated by honey, brioche and notes of dried fruits, hazelnuts and sweets. Perfectly matured.

Manual harvest; then pressing immediately to avoid oxidation & preserve quality. Free run juice only. Aged six years on the lees.

It matches magnificently with foie gras!


Review:

"Based in Chouilly on the Côte des Blancs, it is obvious this producer will have a Blanc de Blancs Champagne. And very good it is, with some age after six years on lees while still having freshness, crisp acidity and a tight, steely edge. The bottling will benefit from further aging, and it will be at its best from 2022. - ROGER VOSS" 

- Wine Enthusiast (December 2020), 92 pt 


 Wine Enthusiast: 92
Roland Champion Champagne Brut Rose Grand Cru NV

Roland Champion Champagne Brut Rose Grand Cru NV is the blend of 20% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Meunier, 40% Pinot Noir. 

Small red fruits (strawberry, raspberry, cherry), characteristic of Pinot Noir with some brioche, toasted aromas coming from the Pinot Meunier. Clear and vinous. Development of red fruit aromas (blackcurrant) on a spice backdrop (cinnamon) and a nice fresh cut apple, grapefruit flavor. A fresh, lively and delicate flavor. Ideal balance between Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir.
 
dosage : 8 grams per liter
ageing : 3.5 years on laths
Even if it doesn't say on the label, 100% of the production is RD (Recently Disgorged)
Total Production for this Cuvée : between 150 cases and 330 cases (9 liter equivalent) per year


"A delicate, subtle Champagne, delivering aromatic notes of mulling spices and yeast that accent the flavors of kirsch, bread dough, candied lemon zest and rose petal. This is finely tuned, with lively acidity and a minerally finish. 330 cases made. –AN"
- Wine Spectator , 91 pts

"Bright orange. Aromas of blood orange, dried rose, allspice and minerals, with a subtle note of anise. Juicy and precise, with very good depth to its spicy red berry and citrus pith flavors. Finishes smooth and long, with excellent clarity and lingering spiciness."
- Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar , 91 pts


"Champion is a small grower in Chouilly, in the Cotes des Blancs, an area known for fantastic chardonnay. This rosé — of which he makes only about 330 cases — includes 10 percent red wines (pinot noir, pinot meunier) to give it a pale, salmonlike color and a beguiling palate of cranberries, strawberries and currants. Wow. And yum."
-  Washington Post, ***


"Eye of the partridge color. With a bouquet that evokes leesy hints of red cherry and berry with a touch of stone fruit, this is a finely sculpted wine, beautifully balanced with rich flavors of cherry, shortbread,and a hint of honeyed apricot. A rosé Champagne that’s complex and dry with good palate depth and length. A blend of 20% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir, and 40% Pinot Meunier; 7-85% of the juice is red wine (Pinot Noir) from 2013 vintage of Coteaux Champenois Rouge from the village of Verneuil. 3+ years on the lees."

- I-WineReview (Champagne: Diversity and Change, January 2020), 92 pts

 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 91 Wine Spectator: 91 International Wine Review: 92
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