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We're happy to announce that a new shipment from Champagne André Beaufort will be arriving in early March, featuring recent disgorgements and new vintages of these superb natural wines. Fifty years of organic farming, living soils, slow wild-yeast fermentations and vinifications with zero or minimal SO2 create these superb wines of terroir.
"Located to the south-east of the Montagne de Reims between Reims, Epernay and Chalons sur Marne, the vines of Ambonnay are found on limestone soil. The climate is continental, rather cold and dry, the winds come particularly from Siberia. Ambonnay is an historic Champagne village, part of the Grand Crus. The Champagnes that we make in Ambonnay are structured, robust, very aromatic. The chalky soil allows a very free and distinctive expression of the grape varieties, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Intense and full on the palate with great length, our Grand Cru Ambonnay is a Champagne of meditation."
"Located on the Côte des Bar, 40km south-east of Troyes, the Polisy terroirs are influenced by the Langres plateau, the air currents are rather cold and humid. Among the small valleys of the vineyard, the Polisy terroirs are found on clay soil, tillage is a little more difficult and requires more extensive work. Historically the vineyards of Polisy were under the influence of Burgundy. The Champagnes that we develop at Polisy are in finesse, in tension, with firm acidity. The clayey soil of the Kimmeridgien limestone gives it an earthy flavor of the terroir with the varietal aromas of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Fine and very long on the palate, our Polisy is a Champagne of action."
We thank the Beaufort family for their long-time committment to organic farming and natural vinifications and for continuing to offer mature Champagnes, recently disgorged. Note: We recommend serving in a fairly large white wine glass, rather than a flute, in order to appreciate the complex aromas of these unique Champagnes. Quantities are extremely limited, wines arrive in early March.
Having missed our trip to France this year, we decided to bring in two vintages from Beaufort that we have not tasted recently, 2012 and 2014. The 2012 has warranted our attention. The robe is a pale golden yellow. The wine has a fine bead and soft foamy mousse. The nose offers aromas of apple blosom, Seville orange peel, and wet stone. The palate is ripe but chiseled, with savory russet apple peel, crushed herbs, evolving with air to offer flavors of salted plum and stone. As with other Beaufort Champagnes the character is vinous and mouth-filling and suited for the table. This shows excellent energy and persistence and beckons for pairing with salmon crudo, marinated roasted peppers, or salade Nicoise with perfectly ripe tomatoes. John McIlwain
Our new shipment of the 2008 Polisy Brut was disgorged for this order in January 2021. 2008 continues to delight, even 12 years after the harvest. The current disgorgement of the Polisy has a pale yellow robe, fine bead, and soft mousse. The nose is soft and pretty offering aromas of golden apple, acacia, lemon curd and apple blossom. The mid-weight palate is bright and brisk on attack, with flavors of Macintosh apple, bergamot, and green tea giving way to a fine core of minerality lending focus. This has good length and energy on a lifted and expansive finish. This is very good with vibrant fruit and nascent aged flavors knitting elegantly. A fine effort from the Beauforts! John McIlwain
A sensational mature Champagne from André Beaufort from the superb 2002 vintage - the estate converted to organic agriculture in the early 70's and makes brilliant, full-bodied Champagnes that are among the most "vinous" being made today. Medium golden yellow in color and sporting a discrete mousse. The nose is quite floral with tones of cherry blossoms, apple blossoms, and irises before touches of quince and fresh baguette. The palate is concentrated with a spherical yet laser-like focus that offers notes of lemon sorbet, tart lemon custard, and apple pie, underlined by a fine minerality that persists through to a rounded, savory finish. Really a very pretty and lovely wine. This medium-bodied Champagne is made of approximately 80% Pinot Noir and 20% Chardonnay and was disgorged in Sept 2019 after 16+ years of sur-lie aging, illustrating the Beauforts' commitment to releasing mature wines.
The 1998 Ambonnay Brut has long been a staff favorite and this disgorgement does not disappoint. Brillliant, golden yellow in color and showing a finely-beaded mousse, this offers one of the two most expressive aromatic profiles of this current Beaufort lineup. Aromas of Mirabelle plums, toasted hazelnuts, and crème brulée transition to notes of Jonagold apples, cinnamon, and wild flowers. The palate is generous and expansive and carries tones of brazil nuts, greengages, and irises that crescendo to a fine, zippy finish. This is complex and delicious Champagne! (Disgorged for this order in Jan, 2021)
The current release of Beaufort Polisy Reserve Brut Nature NV is based on the 2015 vintage and was just disgorged for this order in January 2021. The Polisy NV Brut is a lean, racy expression of the Kimmeridgian limestone of Polisy. The nose is cool-toned and faintly herbal with aromas of green apple, lime zest, and wet stone. The palate is steely and focused, with a prominent mineral character giving way to taut structure and a compelling savory character on the brisk, chiseled finish. I'd love this with crudo, ceviche, or a platter of briny Beausoleil oysters. John McIlwain
Tasted in January 2017 at the estate. Complex aromas of lychee, candied pear, citrus, beautiful palate of yellow fruits, minerals, citrus, caramel with fabulous length. A great vintage in Champagne yielding firmly structured wines for long-term cellaring. We'd love to re-taste this wine but it keeps selling out before we can get to it! (Disgorged for this order in January 2021 after 24+ years on the lees).
We're fans of the Champagnes of Beaufort for a number of reasons. The farming at this historic Domaine is impeccable and the winemaking is classical and refreshingly old school. The 2015 base Ambonnay Grand Cru in handy half bottle is a pocket-sized example of Beaufort's distinctive character. Disgorged December 2020.
As with most vineyards from Beaujolais north to Champagne, 2014 was typified by uneven weather and a cool damp summer, but was saved in the end by a warm, dry September, producing bright, well balanced wines of moderate ripeness. The 2014 Ambonnay Brut, disgorged in 1/21, boasts a super-fine bead and soft frothy mousse. The nose is redolent of dried flowers (chamomile), orange rind, and stone fruit with a briny top note. The palate is firm and concentrated, with flavors of pear skin, russet apple, and spices, underlain by a firm chalky core. And while this displays the power of the Ambonnay grand cru, this shows fine elegance nuance, with layers of mineral detail. Lovely juice, indeed! John McIlwain
This is classic Beaufort: balanced, rounded and finely filigreed with a judicious dosage. In truth, the 2009 Ambonnay Grand Cru tastes very dry for a Brut, closer to an Extra Brut in style. It shows a burnished golden yellow in the glass, adorned by a finely beaded and generous mousse. The nose offers notes of brioche, cardamom, cinnamon, roasted chestnuts, white flowers, and honeysuckle. The palate is powerful and broad, accented with aromas of Cortland apples, apple pie, and nutmeg that lead to a lingering, herbal finish. The 2009 Brut shows the pedigree of its Ambonnay Grand Cru fruit. It's delicious now, but it also has real aging potential. (Lot #09A. Disgorged Nov 2020.)