For years our two Champagne sources have contributed two distinct styles to our portfolio: Pascal Bardoux in Montagne de Reims, with delicate, floral, delicious blends; and Jacques Robin in the Côtes des Bar, with rich, toasty Pinot Noir cuvées. Today we’re thrilled to add a third source, this one from the Côtes des Blancs, bringing something entirely new to the table.
Michel Chauvet and his son are the winemakers at the Domaine Lancelot-Royer, a tiny house in Cramant, just south of Epernay. All of their wines come from grapes they grow themselves, and their vineyards are 100% Chardonnay from exclusively Grand Cru vineyards. Everything here is done by hand, from harvesting and riddling to disgorging, dosing and labeling.
Their NV Cuvée des Chevaliers may be their simplest wine, but it easily has the complexity and subtlety of a $100 bottle. The base of the wine (around two thirds) is from the 2017 vintage, with the rest from barrels of reserved older wines. After spending four years on the lees in the Chauvets’ 50 degree chalk cellars, it was disgorged earlier this year.
Champagnes from the Côtes des Blancs are known for their elegance and chiseled focus, and this cuvée does not disappoint. It’s rich and toasty, with a lovely nose of pear, apple and buttery croissants. The mouth is crisp and delicious with plenty of richness amid the energetic freshness. William Kelley awarded 90 points, finding “generous aromas…rich and fleshy, with an enveloping core of fruit.”
If you’ve got any entertaining in the next two months, this is a must have.
Lancelot-Royer Champagne Grand Cru
“Cuvée des Chevaliers” Brut NV
bottle price: $58