A fine selection of champagne for the festive season
Ever since we set up Atlas in 2010, we have championed individual grower champagne over Grande Marque examples. We believe, as do an increasing number of Atlas clients, that such wines offer unparalleled value through the exceptional quality in the glass.
As Simon recently wrote: “Every time I get the chance to taste an Egly-Ouriet Champagne I am struck by the precision and purity. They are highly individual Champagnes that are now receiving the credit they are due.” I shared a bottle of Egly’s Grand Cru Brut NV only last week and was reminded of the brilliance of this sometimes overlooked wine in their range. It showed a purity, a depth and a complexity that were mesmerising. There is a lot of champagne in the glass here.
Champagne de Sousa is another house with which we are proud to have worked since our earliest days. The wines never disappoint and the value here is breathtaking. As we wrote when we offered the sublime 3A again earlier this year: “When you think that de Sousa’s 3A is crafted solely from plots of vines within famous Grand Cru villages, namely Avize, Äy and Ambonnay (hence the 3A name), and you consider the acclaim that their wines receive, it is a pleasant surprise to see the case price and a great pleasure to continue to taste such wines.”
A more recent discovery of ours has been Adrien Renoir, about whom William Kelley had written: “Every new release from Renoir seems to surpass the last, so I can only encourage readers to start paying attention to one of Champagne's brightest young talents.” We took his advice and offered the NV Extra Brut Grand Cru, Le Terroir earlier this year from a large parcel we bought. As with the wines of Egly-Ouriet and de Sousa we have yet to face disappointment when we have shared a bottle. The wines have a scintillating purity and tension.
All of the below Champagnes have been tasted and are fully endorsed by the Atlas team and wine critics alike, see tasting notes below.
All three are in stock and available for delivery to be enjoyed over the festive period. Please note that, in this instance, prices are given inclusive of duty and VAT - ex delivery.
NV Brut Grand Cru, Egly Ouriet (Disgorged 2022)
92 points, William Kelley, robertparker.com
£451.23 per 6 bottle case inc taxes
Based on the 2017 vintage, Egly's NV Brut Grand Cru unwinds in the glass with aromas of pear, freshly baked bread, lemon zest, tangerine and praline. Full-bodied, layered and elegantly muscular, with terrific concentration, racy acids and chalky structure, it concludes with a long, gently honeyed finish. Egly has always been enthusiastic about the quality of his Ambonnay fruit in 2017, and this bottling certainly validates his early confidence. Drink to 2037.
NV Cuvée 3A, De Sousa (Disgorged 2021)
£283.23 per 6 bottle inc taxes
Simon Larkin MW, Atlas Fine Wines
The pinot noir is clear in the wine’s profile. The aromas pick up notes of ripe orchard fruit, with hints of red berry and the merest hint of something floral. A racy, chalkier/mineral-nuanced cuvée than the Mycorhize, this captures a smoky note to its mouth-watering fruit, with a hint of the lees contact from bottle-age. The clarity and poise of 3A never ceases to impress – something that is common to all de Sousa champagnes. The 3A finishes precise and lively with fine length. Drink to 2028.
NV Le Terroir Verzy Grand Cru, Adrien Renoir
£307.22 per 6 bottle case inc taxes
93+ points, William Kelley, robertparker.com
Disgorged in April 2021 with 1.6 grams per liter dosage, Renoir's NV Extra-Brut Grand Cru Le Terroir (2018 base) is showing very well, unfurling in the glass with aromas of nashi pear, crisp yellow orchard fruit, clear honey and freshly baked bread. Medium to full-bodied, deep and concentrated, with a layered but tightly wound core of fruit that's girdled by bright acids and animated by a pinpoint mousse, it will reward at least a year or two on cork with greater range and plenitude, and it will live for a lot longer. Drink to 2038.
Please let us know of your interest - these cases are offered on a first come, first served basis