First, use a real wine glass, not a tall skinny flute. And don’t be afraid to swirl the wine. I know: the bubbles will fade. But this sensational Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs will continue to evolve for hours, which is a hallmark of the finest wines in Champagne (even the empty glass smells great the next day). The wine has a lovely white gold-in-bright sunlight color, with flashes of platinum; perfectly limpid, except for the streaming bead of tiny precise bubbles. At first, the elegant Chardonnay nose suggests baked Cortland apples and freshly cut hay, with Asian pears, fresh sorrel, and parsley moving in and out of the foreground as the wine evolves in the glass. On the palate, the wine is racy, precise, and energetic, with a fine mineral structure, and a feathery, delicate mousse. The flavors echo the nose, with more white flowers, green apples, rye toast, and pink sea salt, the mesmerizing long finish carried by lively tartaric acidity and the velvety, persistent mousse.
About this wine producer: The Roberts have been vine growers since the nineteenth century, but the current estate dates only to 1960, when André Robert, whose grandfather founded the cooperative in Oger, established what is now one of the most important independent grower estates in the legendary Grand Cru village of Le Mesnil sur Oger. In 2013, Bertrand Robert, the current proprietor, was joined by his daughter Claire Robert, and her husband Jean-Baptiste Denizart.
The estate is spread over 14 hectares in 53 parcels, more than half of which lie in Le Mesnil sur Oger itself, including a parcel in Chétillon, the most prestigious vineyard in the village. Les Jardins du Mesnil is 100% Grand Cru Chardonnay, fermented in used, neutral barriques, and matured in bottle for four years on the lees.