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2018 'Blanchefleur' Blanc de Blancs

DESCRIPTION
An elegant & lithe sparkling with a clean, crisp, dry finish balanced with delicious aromatics of brioche & lingering lemon notes. Blanchefleur is a vintage sparkling which embodies the purity of our cool-climate Chardonnay grapes and meticulous approach to winemaking. Blanc de Blancs use only Chardonnay grapes (hence their name – white of whites) and tend to have a fine bead (smaller bubbles). Blanc de Blancs also tend to be reserved for the very best sparklings and Champagnes in the world (due to their elegance and longevity) and are particularly well suited to pairing with food – befittingly, in France, Blanc de Blancs are called the “Wine Insiders’ Champagne”. The 2016 “Blanchefleur”, our first methode traditionalle Blanc de
Blancs, was ranked equal best in NSW by Winestate Magazine in April 2018.

HERITAGE
Nearly 900 years ago under the patronage of Marie, Countess of Champagne, Chrétien de Troyes penned the first romantic novel and first written account of the Quest for the Holy Grail called le Conte du Graal . The story follows the quest of the young knight, Perceval as he seeks out the Fisher King. He encounters a besieged castle (Beaurepaire) commanded by a beautiful lady (Blanchefleur). Perceval falls in love with
Blanchefleur after which he challenges the besieging knight to single combat, is victorious, liberates the castle and later marries Blanchefleur de Beaurepaire. A great inspiration for one of our premium wines.

TERROIR
The de Beaurepaire family’s estate is in the hills above Rylstone in the Central Ranges of NSW. 53 hectares of vines were planted in 1998. The vineyard is 150km inland and above 600m altitude with a North-East aspect. Soil structure is sandy-loam mixed with limestone; the temperature range is as cool as Tasmania and Central Otago through the growing season; and the climate is inland/continental (large day/night variation) creating a terroir similar to Burgundy (the ancestral home of the de Beaurepaire family for nearly 1200 years).

VINEYARD
All Chardonnay sourced from our first planting in C Block, with an average vine age of 18 years at the time of harvest, where the soils are very shallow (down to 30cm in spots), predominantly sand with a little clay over limestone.

Harvest: Individually selected parcels of Chardonnay were harvested through a combination of hand and machine harvesting on the evening of 24 February 2018 with a baumé of 23, pH of 3.45 and TA of 6.1.
Vintage Conditions: 2018 was the peak of a once in 100-year drought, with yields down nearly 50%. The hottest conditions occurred after harvest of the sparkling base.

VINIFICATION
The fruit was 100% de-stemmed & crushed gently to retain premium free-run juice. Primary fermentation at 14-15 degrees was conducted in the tank using sparkling yeasts, delivering beautiful primary fruit characters. Malo-lactic fermentation (MLF) produced excellent mouth-feel & complexity. Secondary fermentation on lees lasted 12 months. It was disgorged early to maintain freshness & vibrancy.

AGING
The wine was left on lees for 12 months with tirage in April, then left to ferment for a further five months in the bottle before disgorgement & completion in September. Dosage was 3g/litre. It will age very well.

TASTING NOTES
Extra Brut. The wine has a savoury, buttery beautifully-balanced crisp palate, with very desired overtones on the nose of yeasty bread and brioche. It has tight bubbles and lingering notes of melon and lemon.

VIN ET GASTRONOMIE
Beautifully matched with lobster and seafood (especially with creamy sauces); with scallops and truffles (celeriac puree); pork bellies; and white meats.

WINE TIPS
Cellaring Potential: 5 to 10 years
Serving Temperature: 8 degrees C / 47 degrees F

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