Laherte Freres Rose de Meunier NV - Champagne
Bottle size: 750ml
Disgorged July 2022. This dazzling Meunier represents superb value in a market where rosé wines are getting more and more pricey. It’s a blend of Meunier vinified three ways. Some 60% of the volume is from fruit pressed off in the traditional way to make a white wine (over one-third of this component was reserve wines that had been aged in barrels). A second, 30% portion was made as a saignée rosé (the juice left in contact with the skins for a short period). The final 10% of the blend is from a full-blown red wine. The fruit producing the white wine is from vines with an average age of 25 years, and the vines for the red and rosé wines are more than 40 years old. The wines were fermented and aged in a variety of vessels (vats, foudre and old demi-muid barrels) before being transferred to bottle for secondary fermentation. This release is a blend of equal parts 2018 and 2017, and was disgorged with just 2.5 g/L dosage. It’s a beauty!
A rose with so much personality. There are layers of red fruit, crunchy raspberry and cranberry, orange peel and rose petals, along with a savoury herb character and crystalline acidity.
It is hard to understate how far the wines of this producer have come over the years. Aurélien Laherte’s terroir-centric wines are now at a level that bears comparison with many of the best grower wines in Champagne—and let’s not forget that we are talking about a vigneron barely into his forties. They are based in Chavot, where most of their vines are situated, but they also have some parcels in other villages of the Côteaux Sud area as well as some tiny holdings in the Côte des Blancs and the Marne Valley. This domaine’s 10 hectares of vines are fragmented into no less than 75 parcels spread across 10 different villages. In Laherte’s home village of Chavot itself—not a large place by any means—Aurélien has identified no less than 27 distinct terroirs. Many of these parcels are planted to old vines from sélection massale cuttings. Such Burgundian-style diversity has given rise to a series of limited bottlings, sometimes comprised of just a single barrel’s worth of Champagne.
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