Drappier Grande Sendrée 2010 75cl 12% ABV
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Drappier Grande Sendrée 2009 Champagne
This is an impressively rich and savoury Champagne. Drappiers flagship wine shows complex, mature notes of dried fruit, toast and wax, alongside vivid stone fruit and citrus flavours. The palate is graceful despite its underlying power, and finishes extremely long.
For one of Champagnes most forward-thinking producers, Drappier has no shortage of historic roots.
An eighth-generation family business, the house was founded in 1808, and occupies magnificent twelfth-century cellars built by Cistercian monks. Having spearheaded the revival of Pinot Noir in the region, in the 1930s, Drappier continues to innovate.
Extremely low levels of sulphur are used, and there is even a no-added-sulphur cuve made; the liqueur expedition is matured for over fifteen years in oak and demi-johns; and Drappier is the only house to ferment every format, from half-bottles up to the gigantic 30-litre Melchisedech, in the bottle in which it is sold.
This is a single-vineyard wine, taking its name from a parcel of land covered in cinders (cendree) after the fire which ravaged Urville in 1838. The soils are particularly light and chalky, and represent the pinnacle of Drappiers vineyard holdings. Viticulture is close to organic, with horse-drawn ploughing, cover crops and natural fertiliser used.
Only juice from the first pressing was used. Alcoholic fermentation took two weeks at a low temperature, followed by complete, natural malolactic fermentation. A third of the wine was matured in oak barrels for nine months, and the blend then bottled without filtration, before at least six years on lees before disgorgement. Minimal sulphur was used during the production.