This week will see the holiday season kick into high gear. Whether you’re shopping for turkeys, presents, or snow shovels, don’t forget to pick up some bubbly. We’ve selected some truly excellent Champagnes to help brighten the season (and manage the stress)! Happy holidays!
NV JACQUES SELOSSE AMBONNAY LE BOUT DU CLOS EXTRA BRUT GRAND CRU
96 points, Wine Advocate
The NV Extra-Brut Grand Cru Le Bout du Clos is all about power, depth and pure structure. The weight and gravitas of Ambonnay comes through beautifully in this intense, layered Champagne. Hard candy, wild flowers, mint and spice are some of the many notes that take shape in the glass. The current release is a blend of vintages 2004 and 2005, two years that are very much complementary in nature. I drank several bottles of the Bout du Clos during a recent trip in Italy, and was never let down. This is a gorgeous showing. Today the Bout du Clos has an implosive, huge minerality that keeps the wine from being fully expressive, but in another few years, the wine should start to be even better than it is today.
NV JACQUES SELOSSE LES CARELLES BLANC DE BLANCS GRAND CRU
98 points, Wine Advocate
The NV Extra-Brut Grand Cru Les Carelles boasts extraordinary power, breadth and sheer richness. Layers of butter, pastry, tropical fruit, spices and smoke literally bursts from the glass as this exotic, heady Champagne struts its stuff. I imagine the Carelles might be too much for some readers, but for those seeking to get to the heart of the Selosse style; here it is. This is a dazzling showing. Disgorgement date: April 25, 2012. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2020.
Influence is the flagship cuvee of the domaine. The varietal blend is 30% Pinot Noir, 40% Pinot Meunier, and 15% Chardonnay. The final blend contains 15% of reserve wines. As is the case with all of their wines, it is aged in oak and the wine does not undergo malolactic fermentation. 30% of the barrels are less than 4 years with the rest being over 5 years old. The wine is aged for 7 years in bottle on its lees so the current vintage is 2007.
Moët Ice Impérial, the first and only champagne especially created to be enjoyed over ice. A new champagne experience combining fun, fresh and free sensations while remaining true to the Moët & Chandon style, a style distinguished by its bright fruitiness, its seductive palate and its elegant maturity. The profiles of the wines used in the assemblage have been meticulously selected for the specific contribution made by each one: mainly Pinot Noir (40-50%), winey and angular, for its intense fruitiness as well as for its structure, which integrates the dosage. Pinot Meunier (30-40%), full and fleshy, for a rich, melting sensation on the mid-palate. Chardonnay (10-20%) for a refreshing finish. 20 to 30% specially selected reserve wines enhance the assemblage to complete its intensity, richness and constancy.