Artisan Champagne Tasting – The French Brasserie – Melbourne

A great evening had by all – 65 Champagne aficionados. Wines on tasting were

1. J.L.Vergnon Cuvee Conversation Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru.
Crisp and complex, really complex savoury aromas – chalk and citrus but with hints of forest, palate is expansive and complex – a really superb entry level Champagne that drinks way way above its humble pedigree.

2. Launois Cuvee Quartz Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru.
Crisp and tight – leaner and greener style than the Vergnon – but with lively lifted fruits on the palate. Reliable and as good as always.

3. Lilbert Cuvee Reserve Grand Cru Blanc de Blanc.
All minerals, chalk, dried fruits – really complex but needs a few months in the cellar to blossom.

4. Jacques Lassaigne Les Vignes de Montgueux Blanc de Blancs.
Spice and smoke on the nose – oak aromas in abundance but this wine gets very little oak treatment. Palate has the classic chalk and quince of the area – huge length. Superb.

5. Voirin-Jumel Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs.
Pure and elegant – not a big wine – all in balance with lovely white fruits and citrus.

6. Francis Boulard Les Murgiers Blanc de Noirs.
Smoke and red fruits here – lovely spice – great balance and lovely mousse.

7. Francis Boulard Millesime 2005.
More finessefull version of the Les Murgiers – complexity and spice – great food wine.

8. Francis Boulard Rose Saignee.
An elegant saignee rose – nice citrus tang, lovely crushed strawberry aromas. Perfect with food or aperitif.

9. Eric Rodez Crayeres Grand Cru.
Great richness and savoury spice – minerals and lovely salty overtones. Superb.

10. Laherte Brut Tradition.
White stone fruits in abundance with lovely acidity and balance. A great wine for such a humble cuvee.

11. Laherte 2007 Les Vignes d’Autrefois.
Pure Meunier – wow – this is huge – over the top on all fronts and can be cellared – will become something very special in two years.

12. Henriet-Bazin Blanc de Noirs Grand Cru.
Ruch red fruits. All round fun wine which everyone likes!

13. Jacky Charpentier Prestige.
Really elegant – poise and finesse – great length and just a hint of spicey oak. Very popular.

14. Jean Vesselle Saignee Rose.
A sparkling ref burgundy almost – great food wine – with quail or guinea fowl.

15. Marc Hebrart Cuvee Selection.
Lovely weight and sophistication – the elegance of Mareuil-sur-Ay shines strongly in this one!