GROWER CHAMPAGNE CLUB

NOVEMBER 2020

LELARGE-PEUGOT

RIDDLING FROM SONOMA

The Lelarge family has been growing grapes in Vrigny, located at the Northern tip of Montagne de Reims since the 1700’s. It took until the 30’s for the family to first bottle under their own label which was at the time, Champagne Raymond Lelarge. Today, the winery is owned and operated by Dominique Pugeot & Dominique Lelarge and their daughter Clemence now lives here in Sonoma, running their entire distribution. 

 

Certified Organic since 2014 and Biodynamic since 2017, they farm 4.4 hectares of Meunier, 2.8 hectares of Pinot Noir and 1.5 hectares of Chardonnay in the distinct sandy and clay limestone soils of Vrigny. Championing Pinot Meunier in this area made them outliers not too long ago for sure, but now that it is the hot grape to seek out they are ahead of the curve. Speaking of hot, now that the world is warming, Clemence would point out they are also able to make a still red wine from Meunier that far north for the first time ever. Yipes… and Yay! They are truly a rare wonderful gem of a family in Champagne, using essential oils and treatments instead of chemicals, plowing their fields by horse as opposed to machine. The evidence of their hard work shows in the wines – they are alive, layered with complexity, and truly an expression of their land.

– Kevin Wardell, November 2020

 

DOWNLOAD PDF OF TASTING NOTES HERE

 

LELARGE-PUGEOT NATURE

Chardonnay + Pinot Noir
Vrigny Premier Cru, Champagne, France
RE-ORDER $65

Like the whimsical dandelion blowing away on the bottle, this wine invokes a nostalgia for meadow flowers idly plucked and sniffed in summers past. Chamomile and fennel pollen, sweet peas and caraway seed drift by, along with a delicate hint of rose, like an aromatic quince membrillo.  Tear open a bag of oyster crackers or a sleeve of saltines to sprinkle on top of this summer revelry, just as crunchy as salt crystals and as light as dandelion fluff.

50% Chardonnay and 50% Pinot Noir entirely from the 2015 vintage, vin clair aged for 6 months in stainless steel tanks and in barrel. 16 months on the lees in bottle, disgorged in 2018. Dosage 0 g/L and no sulfur added to this cuvée ever!

LELARGE-PUGEOT “LES MEUNIERS DE CLÉMENCE” NV

Pinot Meunier
Vrigny Premier Cru, Champagne, France
RE-ORDER $68

Meunier is so rarely bottled on its own- in large part because it tends toward brooding and earthy- even funky; but here is the epitome of meunier with a balance of depth and lightness, beauty and umami. With the crunch of a classic snappy red delicious apple, a bit of bitterness like walnut skin, and a savoriness like a rich porcini mushroom reduction sauce, it’s got that true grit earthiness of the mightiest meuniers. Fresh rolled oats and salty tidal breezes and a texture like sun, it’s all at once crispy saline and decadently creamy.

100% Pinot Meunier made entirely from the 2012 harvest, vin clair aged for 6 months in stainless steel, aged 6 years in bottle on the lees. Dosage: 3 g/L