Bérêche Champagne Rilly-La-Montagne 1er Cru Extra Brut 2017

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Bérêche Champagne Rilly-La-Montagne 1er Cru Extra Brut 2017
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Country France
Region Champagne
Appellation/Sub-Region Champagne AOC
Grapes Pinot Noir
Vineyard/Cellar Practices Sustainably Grown, Vegan

Raphaël and Vincent Bérêche are the young innovators behind this old family domaine founded in 1847. The fifth generation to head the estate (Raphaël joined his father in 2004), they are unceasingly curious and meticulous, garnering immense attention in France and now in the US. The estate's vineyards are planted with roughly equal parts of chardonnay, pinot noir, and pinot meunier. They have been turning their attention to natural viticulture, having completely stopped using chemical herbicides in 2003, and converting to biodynamic since 2007. They have slowly been increasing the percentage of oak used in the cellar, and today about three-quarters of the production is vinified in barrel. Disgorging is still done entirely by hand, and they use a traditional liqueur for dosage.

Rilly-La-Montagne is a blanc de noirs made with 100% pinot noir sourced from a 0.40ha plot of 36 year-old vines in the Montagne de Reims. The 2016 vintage aged for 36 months in bottle before disgorgement in February 2021. Intense aromatics on this one - fresh pear, yellow plum, and a hint of oak spice. It has tension and complexity, a refined mousse, and a long, focused finish. Sustainably grown, vegan.