Champagne Le Brun de Neuville Authentique Assemblage – “Five years aging on lees, under cork rather than crown cap for $35? Who says fine Champagne has to be expensive? One of my favorite under $40 bottles of Champagne this year !”
Grapes for this wine were sourced from the Côte de Sézanne region of Champagne. The area is mostly planted with Chardonnay as the region has the same chalk seam as the Côte des Blancs. The soil is composed of chalk with large amounts of marl and sand. The primary similarity between the two regions is that Chardonnay is the predominant grape.
This wine is a blend of 75% Chardonnay, 25% Pinot Noir. Primary fermentation was done in stainless steel (92%) and oak barrels (8%). It was aged for five years on the lees. The sur-lie aging was done under cork rather that crown cap, a much more labor-intensive process usually reserved for much more expensive wines, most famously vintage Bollinger. It is believed secondary fermentation under cork rather than screw cap adds greater depth and complexity to wine, including a more delicate bead and a softer mousse. Dosage is 7.5 g/L
My tasting notes follow:
Color – Brilliant pale yellow
Aromas – Charming toast, apple, baked white peach, lemon marmalade, floral and chalk
Body – Medium/full-bodied, fresh, elegant , harmonious and focused with a rich, creamy mousse
Taste – Yellow apple, pear, tangerine, lemon, with a very appealing minerality that is both saline and chalky
Finish – Long
91 pts – 12% abv| SRP – $35|5,006 bottles produced| Sample purchased for review
Five years aging on lees, under cork rather than crown cap for $35? Who says fine Champagne has to be expensive? One of my favorite under $40 bottles of Champagne this year!
About Champagne Le Brun
The award-winning coopérative Le Brun de Neuville was founded in 1963 by the Le Brun family and a team of twenty passionate winegrowers in the Sézannais, The Le Brun family has a long history in the region and has been producing wine there for five generation. Today, the cooperative has 150 members harvesting 152 hectares of hillside vineyards spread over seven villages with crus like Villenauxe-la Grande, Fontaine-Denis, Barbonne-Fayel, but also Chantemerle and La-Celle-sous-Chantemerle. Chardonnay makes up 90% of total production. They sell 65% to other producers, while the best is saved for Le Brun de Neuville.
Le Brun earned the “Champagne Producer of the Year Award” presented by International Wine & Spirit Competition for 2015.
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