Gaston Chiquet Brut Tradition
Cuvée Tradition Brut | PREMIER CRU
As its name implies, a classic blended Champagne comprised of 40% Pinot Meunier, 35% Chardonnay and 25% Pinot Noir, incorporating base wines from more than one harvest. The cuvée tradition has been honored at the Nobel Banquet 2013. Clearly good enough for the world's best and brightest this champagne is supple and fine with good length representing the terroir from which it is produced: Chiquet's vineyards around the villages of Hautvillers, Dizy and Mareuil-sur-Aÿ.
Here the soils are clay and limestone on belemnita quadrata chalk. This chalk variety stores and radiates solar heat, maximizes drainage of excess water and retains humidity in summer. It stores the principal minerals that give the grapes their high ester content. With vines averaging 25 years and pruned according to “Chablis” and “Cordon de Royat” methods, they come in fragrant and expressive of these gifted holdings which are vinified by parcel in small-volume, temperature-controlled tanks during 4 to 7 months after harvest. Aged on lees 2.5 to 3.5 years. With a reserved dosage of 6 g/l, this champagne expresses all the energy one hopes to find from this grower estate.
Golden yellow hue, fine mousse. Fresh nose of dried apricots with a hint of citrus. Chiquet credits the telltale smooth palate to Pinot Meunier. Fresh, balanced and fruity Brut Tradition is charming for its fresh apricot, white peach, and citrus notes that come together on an aromatic finish.
Nicolas was the only producer who made sure I didn’t have to sell a 2011-based NV. He moved some allocations around so that we had the 2010-based wine for an extra year, and now we’re leapfrogging to the 2012. Look for disgorgements starting with 5/2016 (and moving forward, of course). In essence this wine combines the pumpernickel-sweetness of Meunier with a walnutty richness typical of this part of the Marne, and what makes it most wonderful is that it’s both extremely articulate and openly friendly. It is class defined and enacted. If you think such qualities are “mainstream”, shame on you. Such qualities are rare, my friend, and you do not have the privilege to take them for granted. It’s 40% PM, 35% CH and 20% PN. There’s 30% reserve wine, which includes some 2011, which one does—alas—notice. Otherwise the wine is saltier than usual, with somewhat more power and length. —Terry Theise
Where to find this wine
Accounts that have purchased this wine in the previous twelve months are listed below, alphabetically by city. Please call ahead to confirm availability or vintage
North Loop Wine & Spirits
The Wine Shop
Apollo Liquor Best
Andy's - Crossroads