Paul Lebrun, Blanc De Blancs Brut, La Signa-Terres, Champagne, France
Nathalie Vignier only makes Blanc-de-Blancs Champagne, but not any old Blanc-de-Blancs. As co-owner and winemaker at Champagne Paul Lebrun, she is fortunate to own some of the best Chardonnay terroir in Champagne.
Nathalie, is the sixth generation of her family to make wine in Cramant (although her family’s ties to Champagne date as far back as the 16th century). Her grandfather, Paul Lebrun, was one of the first vignerons to break away from the big négociants after the Great War and established his own brand, Champagne Paul Lebrun, in 1931. Nathalie is all about terroir. Together with her brother, she owns 16.5 hectares distributed across the Côte des Blancs and the Côte de Sézanne, including 3 Grand Cru and 2 Premier Cru villages. The jewel in the crown is Cramant, which was one of the first villages of the Côte des Blancs to be classified Grand Cru. The chalky clay soils of Cramant give richness and power to the wines. By contrast, the Côte de Sézanne (in reality an extension of the Côte des Blancs but more often referred to as one of the 5 sub-regions of Champagne) is dominated by chalk and marl. Its more southerly location and heavier soils giver riper and more fragrantly fruity wines. The soil is made up of silex stones, which collect the heat of the sun during the day, redistributing it to the vines at night. Nathalie is also about family. Her aim is to preserve and improve upon her family’s legacy in order to hand over in turn to her son Joseph. This is reflected in the range of Hérédis-Terres wines, which celebrates key winemaking figures in her family.
20% of the fruit comes from the Côte des Blancs (Cramant) where the chalky soils contribute to the wines crisp acidity and mineral character and 80% from Coteaux du Sézannais and Saudoy. This terroir features a combination of clay, limestone, and marl soils, imparting complexity and richness to the wine. The Saudoy sub-region is primarily composed of clay and limestone, contributing to the depth and power found in the wines.
Vinification is carried out in stainless steel tanks. Ageing on lees for 5 years before disgorgement and a traditional Brut Dosage of 8gr/L.
No oak ageing
An incredible butter-like creaminess which supports orchard fruits as well as flora, citrus and almond aromas. Toasty, but with a soft palate thanks to the mild dosage and a creamy petillance which doesn't overpower the delicate texture and freshness. The finish is lengthy with hints of toast, zest and salted almonds.
Serve with slow roast pork belly, poached Dublin Bay prawns but equally good with apple crumble.
6 x 75cl