WTN: Champagnes plus Jason Lett at the Dorks

The place for all things wine, focused on serious wine discussions.

Moderators: Jenise, David M. Bueker, Robin Garr

WTN: Champagnes plus Jason Lett at the Dorks

Postby Marc D » Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:11 pm

Last night the Dorks of York got together to try some Champagnes. Jason Lett, the winemaker from Eyrie Winery was in town and joined the tasting. It was a real pleasure to meet Jason.
He is carrying on the very fine wine making tradition his father David started in the Dundee Hills of Oregon in the 1960s.

There were two Chablis as starters, both 2009 from Long Depaquit.

2009 Long Depaquit Premier Cru ‘Les Vaillons’ This was pale yellow, a nice mix of mineral and apple fruit, touch of lemon citrus. You could tell it was from a warmer vintage, as it seemed rounder then many Chablis with still some decent acidity. Drinking nicely.

2009 Long Depaquit Grand Cru ‘Moutonne’ These grapes come from a 2.35 ha monopole that spans a parcel of vines situated in both Vaudésirs and Preuses though 95% of it is in Vaudésirs (from Burghound). The fruit here seemed very ripe, dry, minerally, with a fair amount of concentration and extract. More complex then the 1er before it, but maybe a touch more oak noticeable and this to me needs more time to develop.

On to the Champagnes.
Bruno Paillard Brut Rose disgorged 2009. Pale salmon color, lovely nose of strawberry, fair amount of bread and lees, dry mouth, long finish. This had a perfect mix of savory with the fruit and I thought it was excellent. One of the stars of the night.

Fleury 1995 Extra Brut Big expressive apple and nut nose. Juicy with baked apple fruit. Extraordinary finish with sharp bright acids combining with a very spicy quality. It showed development of its age but still going quite strong. A lovely bottle of vintage champagne, another highlight of the night.

Vouette et Sorbée NV 'Blanc d'Argiles' disgorge 5/2010. Fascinating champagne which really was quite different and stood out the most to me. 100% Chardonnay coming from biodynamic tended vines in the Côte des Bar area, growing on Kimmeridgian soils similar to Chablis. Aged in oak barrels and non dosage. The nose was full of saline minerals, floral perfume, hints of caramel (from the wood barrel?), earthy root flavors, and maybe the slightest bit of sherry like oxidation. Yeasty too, with a fabulous big texture. Again, quite unique and different.

Jérôme Prévost, "La Closerie les Beguines" Extra Brut I think this was from 2007 vintage but not certain. A very sharp expressive nose, minerals, yeast, hint of ginger spice. Great texture, the flavors seemed to expand in the mouth. A little smoke and possibly hints at an oxidized style, but that is subtle. Finishes on a spicy note also. 100% Pinot Meunier. A real beauty.

NV Bonnaire Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut Grand Cru The seemed the most "classic" style so far. Linear, and a good mix of bread/yeast and yellow apple fruit. Richer then some of the previous wines. Very good in a straight forward way.

Crémant de Bourgogne, Val de Mer NV A ringer, this is a sparkling wine from Chablis producer Patrick Piuze. Initially this was served too cold to get a good read on. Crisp, dry, smoky/funky nose and flavors. Better and more complex as it warms up. I heard other mention some various curry spices they tasted in this one. Lots of chalky minerals. I liked it. Pretty tough company for this wine but it was good.

NV Roses de Jeanne / Cédric Bouchard Champagne Blanc de Noirs Les Ursules We think this was from the 2009 vintage. This was my wine and I decanted it for 90 minutes before we drank it. It looked pale pink in the decanter but once poured more of a yellow color. Very vinous, well defined pretty pinot noir fruit, hints of dry tobacco leaf, waxy, full mouth, finishes with an anise spice. I loved this, it seems closer to fine red burgundy then Champagne in some ways.

Jacquart Brut Mosaïque NV A blend of all 3 grapes, and from a variety of vineyards across the region, hence "mosaique". Also about 20% reserve wines added. 10g/L dosage. This had a strong nose, smoky, almost peaty like an Islay whisky. Nice mouth, more rounded then sharp, but to me the aroma was the thing that stood out here. Not one of my favorites, but others at the table seemed to enjoy it.

Chartogne-Taillet 'Cuvee Fiacre' 60% Chardonnay / 40% Pinot Noir. 8g/L dosage. Very sweet smelling initially. Honey, bread, and cherry nose. There seems to be a disconnect between the sucrosity of the aroma with the sharp almost acrid finish. This wine divided the table, several tasters didn't like and several had it as one of their favorites. This wine would have benefited from a full evening to allow it to unwind. I got a small second pour later and it was better, more complex with savory elements adding to the initial fruit. Alas, this is one of the faults of trying to taste with this many fine wines over a few hours. Each bottle could be worthy of a full evening to itself, IMO.

Perrier-Jouët Belle Epoque 1999 A blend of 50% Chardonnay, 45% Pinot Noir and 5% Pinot Meunier. A bit stinky bottle bouquet on opening. Reserved nose, composed. Some floral, lemon, and apple flavors. Very elegant fruit, well delineated, and a clean lingering aftertaste. Classy. I loved this.

At the end of the Champagnes we had a chance to taste some of the Eyrie wines. There was a 2009 Chardonnay reserve, and a 2009 Black Cap Chardonnay. The 09 Black Cap was really excellent. There was a tiny bit of new oak. Very mineral, savory nose, mixed with ripe but not tropical Chardonnay fruit. This goes through full malolactic fermentation, but retains good freshness and acidity. It has great concentration and I thought fine balance. Very impressive and one of the better whites from Oregon I've tried. It seems to lean more towards Burgundy then the New World in style, and closer to Beaune then Chablis. 13.5% abv. There was an Eyrie Pinot Noir that I think was the 2010 vintage. It was very much in the classic Eyrie style, pale red color, understated clean fruit with a mix of earth and soil flavors. I have always loved Eyrie's style of Pinot, and it seems Jason is continuing his Father's excellent ways.

A real nice tasting, not one dog in the bunch.
Thanks Gabe and Melissa for hosting.
Marc Davis
Marc D
Wine guru
 
Posts: 580
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 7:44 pm
Location: Bellingham WA

Re: WTN: Champagnes plus Jason Lett at the Dorks

Postby David M. Bueker » Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:15 pm

Love the Fiacre. What vintage was it?
There behind the glass lies a real blade of grass. Be careful as you pass. Move along. Move along.
User avatar
David M. Bueker
Riesling Guru
 
Posts: 22132
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2006 12:52 pm
Location: Connecticut

Re: WTN: Champagnes plus Jason Lett at the Dorks

Postby Marc D » Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:30 pm

David M. Bueker wrote:Love the Fiacre. What vintage was it?

If my notes are correct vintage was 2006, but disgorged in 2012.
Could that be right?
Marc Davis
Marc D
Wine guru
 
Posts: 580
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 7:44 pm
Location: Bellingham WA

Re: WTN: Champagnes plus Jason Lett at the Dorks

Postby David M. Bueker » Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:35 pm

Marc D wrote:
David M. Bueker wrote:Love the Fiacre. What vintage was it?

If my notes are correct vintage was 2006, but disgorged in 2012.
Could that be right?


Yes. Makes sense.
There behind the glass lies a real blade of grass. Be careful as you pass. Move along. Move along.
User avatar
David M. Bueker
Riesling Guru
 
Posts: 22132
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2006 12:52 pm
Location: Connecticut

Re: WTN: Champagnes plus Jason Lett at the Dorks

Postby Jenise » Thu Dec 20, 2012 6:17 pm

Marc, thanks for posting (and saving me some typing). It was so good to see you again, and especially on a night where the wines were all so so good.

My notes are actually very similar to yours, both in what I noted and what I liked, so I'll contribute just by adding a small bit here and there.

2009 Long Depaquit Premier Cru ‘Les Vaillons’ This was pale yellow, a nice mix of mineral and apple fruit, touch of lemon citrus. You could tell it was from a warmer vintage, as it seemed rounder then many Chablis with still some decent acidity. Drinking nicely.

2009 Long Depaquit Grand Cru ‘Moutonne’ These grapes come from a 2.35 ha monopole that spans a parcel of vines situated in both Vaudésirs and Preuses though 95% of it is in Vaudésirs (from Burghound). The fruit here seemed very ripe, dry, minerally, with a fair amount of concentration and extract. More complex then the 1er before it, but maybe a touch more oak noticeable and this to me needs more time to develop.

On to the Champagnes.
Bruno Paillard Brut Rose disgorged 2009. Pale salmon color, lovely nose of strawberry, fair amount of bread and lees, dry mouth, long finish. This had a perfect mix of savory with the fruit and I thought it was excellent. One of the stars of the night. A star for me, too. In addition to what you mention, I found earthy notes of sarsparilla which might be what gives this young wine a more mature character than it's years would suggest it should have. All in a good way, of course.

Fleury 1995 Extra Brut Big expressive apple and nut nose. Juicy with baked apple fruit. Extraordinary finish with sharp bright acids combining with a very spicy quality. It showed development of its age but still going quite strong. A lovely bottle of vintage champagne, another highlight of the night. The texture of this wine was another highlight for me, with it's particularly fine, pin-pricky and persistent little bubbles.

Vouette et Sorbée NV 'Blanc d'Argiles' disgorge 5/2010. Fascinating champagne which really was quite different and stood out the most to me. 100% Chardonnay coming from biodynamic tended vines in the Côte des Bar area, growing on Kimmeridgian soils similar to Chablis. Aged in oak barrels and non dosage. The nose was full of saline minerals, floral perfume, hints of caramel (from the wood barrel?), earthy root flavors, and maybe the slightest bit of sherry like oxidation. Yeasty too, with a fabulous big texture. Again, quite unique and different. My notes start "floral, chalky nose, raw/new", no doubt somewhat in comparison to the faux and real maturities of the wines before it.

Jérôme Prévost, "La Closerie les Beguines" Extra Brut I think this was from 2007 vintage but not certain. A very sharp expressive nose, minerals, yeast, hint of ginger spice. Great texture, the flavors seemed to expand in the mouth. A little smoke and possibly hints at an oxidized style, but that is subtle. Finishes on a spicy note also. 100% Pinot Meunier. A real beauty. I thought this a tad sweet for an Extra Brut with a sherried richness and round, lanoline mouthfeel. Intriguingly different.

NV Bonnaire Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut Grand Cru The seemed the most "classic" style so far. Linear, and a good mix of bread/yeast and yellow apple fruit. Richer then some of the previous wines. Very good in a straight forward way.

Crémant de Bourgogne, Val de Mer NV A ringer, this is a sparkling wine from Chablis producer Patrick Piuze. Initially this was served too cold to get a good read on. Crisp, dry, smoky/funky nose and flavors. Better and more complex as it warms up. I heard others mention some various curry spices they tasted in this one. Lots of chalky minerals. I liked it. Pretty tough company for this wine but it was good. Tim mentioned cumin and Jason was on the same page with turmeric, but honestly, I didn't find either. Perhaps I was concentrating on the minerality of what was essentially a Sparkling Chablis.

NV Roses de Jeanne / Cédric Bouchard Champagne Blanc de Noirs Les Ursules We think this was from the 2009 vintage. This was my wine and I decanted it for 90 minutes before we drank it. It looked pale pink in the decanter but once poured more of a yellow color. Very vinous, well defined pretty pinot noir fruit, hints of dry tobacco leaf, waxy, full mouth, finishes with an anise spice. I loved this, it seems closer to fine red burgundy then Champagne in some ways. Great observation. My notes mention a honeyed fruit with a touch of coconut and great depth.

Jacquart Brut Mosaïque NV A blend of all 3 grapes, and from a variety of vineyards across the region, hence "mosaique". Also about 20% reserve wines added. 10g/L dosage. This had a strong nose, smoky, almost peaty like an Islay whisky. Nice mouth, more rounded then sharp, but to me the aroma was the thing that stood out here. Not one of my favorites, but others at the table seemed to enjoy it. Complete agreement, nothing delicate here and the huge, smokey nose robbed it of balance.

Chartogne-Taillet 'Cuvee Fiacre' 60% Chardonnay / 40% Pinot Noir. 8g/L dosage. Very sweet smelling initially. Honey, bread, and cherry nose. There seems to be a disconnect between the sucrosity of the aroma with the sharp almost acrid finish. This wine divided the table, several tasters didn't like and several had it as one of their favorites. This wine would have benefited from a full evening to allow it to unwind. I got a small second pour later and it was better, more complex with savory elements adding to the initial fruit. Alas, this is one of the faults of trying to taste with this many fine wines over a few hours. Each bottle could be worthy of a full evening to itself, IMO. Put me down as a favorite. My notes mention that it was more nose than palate right now "but confident palate will catch up".

Perrier-Jouët Belle Epoque 1999 A blend of 50% Chardonnay, 45% Pinot Noir and 5% Pinot Meunier. A bit stinky bottle bouquet on opening. Reserved nose, composed. Some floral, lemon, and apple flavors. Very elegant fruit, well delineated, and a clean lingering aftertaste. Classy. I loved this. Me, too. I called the nose "necrotic".

At the end of the Champagnes we had a chance to taste some of the Eyrie wines. There was a 2009 Chardonnay reserve, and a 2009 Black Cap Chardonnay. The 09 Black Cap was really excellent. There was a tiny bit of new oak. Very mineral, savory nose, mixed with ripe but not tropical Chardonnay fruit. This goes through full malolactic fermentation, but retains good freshness and acidity. It has great concentration and I thought fine balance. Very impressive and one of the better whites from Oregon I've tried. It seems to lean more towards Burgundy then the New World in style, and closer to Beaune then Chablis. 13.5% abv. There was an Eyrie Pinot Noir that I think was the 2010 vintage. It was very much in the classic Eyrie style, pale red color, understated clean fruit with a mix of earth and soil flavors. I have always loved Eyrie's style of Pinot, and it seems Jason is continuing his Father's excellent ways. I found the 09 Reserve a bit too ripe, but loved the Black Cap for the reasons you state. I've never had an Oregon chardonnay of this stature before, so it was an educational experience. They said it would retail for about $70ish. Oddly, a page was torn out of my notebook that took whatever I would have written about the two pinot noirs with it, but I do remember being especially taken with the second of the two, which I believe was an '09 where the first was a '10.

Thanks for doing the workhorse job on the notes!
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
Jenise
FLDG Dishwasher
 
Posts: 26373
Joined: Tue Mar 21, 2006 3:45 pm
Location: The Pacific Northest Westest


Return to The Wine Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], Yahoo [Bot] and 9 guests