You should drink grower Champagne if you've forgotten that
Champagne is wine
$50 NV Gaston Chiquet Brut Valle de Marne
This is everything that NV (Non-Vintage) Brut should be. With one, maybe two exceptions, this would wipe the floor with anything from any négoçiant. It’s so silken and fine, full of oleander, pumpernickel and mimosa, and the palate has exceptional grace and detail.
$50 NV Chartogne-Taillet Brut "St.Anne" Montage de Reims
50-50 Chard/PN (though there’s often a little Meunier depending on the details of each particular assemblage), disgorged 11/07; this is an excellent bottling of this most tasty and reliable Champagne; it’s the silkiest and finest yet; indeed really swank fizz, with its customary blend of leather and butter-sautéed apples.
$50 NV henri goutorbe brut cuvee prestige (vegan)
Loads of hay and hawthorne, an old-school
Champagne as rendered by an elegant lithe lady with a warm soul. What we love about
this wine is the mingling of firmness and generosity.Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier.
$65 NV pierre peters cuvee reserve
We are talking superb aromas: a riot of flowers, lobster and brioche. It's unusually ripe, dynamic and powerful, and also quite settled-tasting, with a long deep clinging finish. As good as many others' vintage wines, 100% Chardonnay.
$50 NV Guy Larmandier Brut Vertus
One of the really good, true cru Champagne growers.
$50 NV Billecart Salmon Brut
Little introduction is needed for this outstanding Champagne house. Light to medium body. A blend of the very best Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. Incredible flavors of ripe pear and fresh fruit.
$35 NV paul laurent brut
Looking for high-quality, affordable Champagne? Look no further than Paul Laurent! A blend of 80% Pinot Noir and 20% Chardonnay, this wine follows traditional Champagne methods of vinification and is aged on its lees for a minimum of 18 months prior to release. The predominance of Pinot noir is apparent in the bright, berry fruit aromas and a rich, mouth-filling texture. The Chardonnay lends liveliness and provides its pleasantly long, clean finish.
"You should drink "farmer-fizz" if you'd rather buy Champagne from a farmer than a factory.
You should drink it if you'd rather have a wine expressive of vineyard, and the grower's own connection to vineyard, than a wine "formed" by a marketing swami who's studied to the Nth-degree what you can be persuaded to "consume." Do you really want to be reduced to a mere "consumer" when you can drink Champagne like a whole human being?
You should drink grower-Champagne if the individually distinctive flavors of terroir-driven wines matter more than the lowest-common-denominator pap served up by the mega conglomerates in the "luxury goods" business.
You should drink it because it's honest REAL wine grown and made by a vintner-by a FAMILY just like yours-by a "him," not by an "it." You should drink it because it's better to buy wine from a person than from a company.
You should drink it because its price is honestly based on what it costs to produce, not manipulated to account for massive PR and ad budgets, or to hold on to market-share.
You should drink grower-Champagne because, like all hand-crafted estate-bottled wines, it is not a mere Thing but is indeed a BEING, expressive of where it grew and who raised it. In drinking it you help protect DIVERSITY, and diversity leads to VITALITY. And if you'd rather eat a local field-ripened summer tomato rapturous with sweetness instead of some January tomato you buy at the supermarket hard as a stone and tasting of nothing, then you should be drinking farmer-fizz!"
- Terry Theise
$35 nv duc de romet brut "prestige"
The Duc de Romet Brut is a Blanc de Noirs of Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. It’s 75% Meunier and 25% Pinot Noir.
The Duc de Romet, made by Jean-Baptiste Geoffroy, is a delightfully balanced Blanc de Noirs made from purchased grapes from many of Geoffroy's small-producer colleagues. This is a ND (Négociant-Distributeur), which means this is a blend from the different growers in the Vallée de la Marne who do not produce their own Champagne. The grapes are sent to the local co-op where they are fermented and then Jean-Baptiste does the final blend.
$35 nv rene marie catel blanc de noirs
Coming from families who have been growing grapes in Champagne since 1710, René and Marie-Noëlle DAUTEL started producing their own champagne in 1971. Sylvain Dautel, their son, is now in charge of the vineyard located in Loches-Sur-Ource, a small village in the heart of Côte des Bars. Sylvain is perpetuating the tradition of his ancestors, using environmental friendly practices to create the most delicate, yet intense Champagnes. Cuvée René-Marie Catel is a rare Brut, Blanc de Noirs (100% Pinot Noir), aged for two years in small oak barrels.
Radiant nose, revealing white-fleshed fruits (apple, pear, peach white), citrus (lemon) and floral nuances. Ample in the mouth, combining generosity and subtlety. Full, fresh and crisp.