In March 2018, after a long and patient process of development, the very first edition of Champagne AR Lenoble Intense “mag14” and the very first edition of Champagne AR Lenoble Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Chouilly “mag14” are both finally ready to be released from our cellars. They will be released for the very first time at Prowein in Hall 12, Stand D11.
As soon as they arrived at AR Lenoble nearly 25 years ago after taking over from their father Jean-Marie Malassagne in 1993, sister-and-brother co-owners Anne and Antoine Malassagne made the decision to start conserving their reserve wines in 225-litre barrels using the principle of the perpetual reserve, a process that continues to this day.
A few years later, they invested in 5,000-litre casks to allow for an ageing process that was slower than in barrels. In these containers, reserve wines obtain additional brightness and freshness.
More recently, in 2010, as part of their constant research for ways to improve the quality of their wines, they decided to add an additional element to the perpetual reserve by conserving some of their reserve wines in magnums under cork and staple. As this particular bottle has the ideal “liquid – oxygen” ratio, and as the wines age under CO2 therefore protected from oxygen, the cork allows only very little air to enter the bottle. Due to the destruction of the yeasts by the enzymes of the wine, a phenomenon known as autolysis, a subtle and exceptional aromatic palette is able to develop.
Following the 2014 harvest, as he was blending his non-vintage wines, Antoine Malassagne decided to add some of the reserve wines from the 2010 harvest that had been ageing for 4 years in magnums under cork in our cellars. Once the final blends were determined, the wines were bottled in preparation for their secondary fermentation, and allowed to age on their lees for several years…and now they are ready to be tasted for the first time.
“AR Lenoble is fortunate enough to own 10 hectares of chardonnay in the Grand Cru village of Chouilly, the northernmost Grand Cru on the Côte des Blancs, where the grapes have a tendency to produce wines that are particularly rich and creamy,” said Antoine Malassagne. “My goal has always been to bring as much freshness to my wines as possible while still allowing the unique character of Chouilly to shine through.”
The first editions of Champagne AR Lenoble Brut Nature Dosage Zéro “mag14” and Champagne AR Lenoble Rosé Terroirs Chouilly-Bisseuil “mag14” will be released at the end of 2018.
This post is also available in: French