Most Champagne-enthusiasts are aware of the three main grapes of Champagne: Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay. A lesser known fact is that there are seven authorized grapes in the region of Champagne which include all colors of the Pinot grape (Noir, Meunier, Gris and Blanc), Chardonnay, Petit Meslier and Arbane.
François Moutard (Champagne Moutard) made headlines in Paris a few years back when he first introduced his Cuvée des 6 Cépages; Francois added to the traditional Champagne blend the two almost extinct grapes of Petit Meslier and Arbane.
Ever since, several other producers have created their own cuvées of 6 and 7 cépages, but almost all of them buy the Arbane from François who controls 90% of all the plantings of Arbane in Champagne region. The vineyards are located in the communes of Buxeuil and Polisy in the southernmost appellation in Champagne called Côte-des-Bar.
The particularity here is that the soil type is very similar to that of Chablis (Kimmeridgian soil), a type of the limestone composed of tiny ancient oyster shells. On the southern-facing slopes of the Côte-des-Bar is where the finicky Arbane, thrives the best. Arbane and Petit-Meslier were abandoned by the Champagne growers in the first place because they are hard to ripen in the cool Champagne climate.
Arbane and Petit Meslier bring new levels of fruit and complexity to the Champagne blend.
For the first time this year, we are introducing the Limited Edition Cuvée des 6 Cépages, presented in a gold bottle. This unique cuvée has been made with equal parts of six grape varieties: Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay, Petit Meslier and Arbane. The Cuvée des 6 Cépages Limited Edition Gold 2008 was crafted from the highest quality grapes and benefits from extended aging – 6 years on the lees in the bottle in the coolness of the underground chalk cellars.
The Cuvée des 6 Cépages Limited Edition Gold 2008 exhibits expressive aromas of sweet citrus, apple, white flowers, but also complex flavors of toast, brioche and hazelnut. Creamy textured, with crisp acidity, delicate small bubbles and persistent effervescence on a long-lasting lively finish. Cuvée des 6 Cépages Limited Edition Gold 2008 is one of the finest Champagnes ever tasted and best value at only $74.99. It is available in-store only in extremely limited quantities!
Atanas Nechkov, Wine & Spirits Sales Manager
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