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Posted by on Dec 28, 2020 in Blog, Essays | 1 comment





Many casual wine drinkers think of Champagne (and sparkling wines) as special occasions reserved only for the holidays, such as Christmas and New Years.  However, I enjoy these lovelies year around!  Question:  Is there a better time to celebrate life than a drab Tuesday in the middle of February (or whenever?).  That’s when we need champagne the most!!!

Now, on to my review.

Today’s selection is way above and beyond my usual price point.  I’m typically a world-class expert on wines at $20 or less.  But a wonderful benefactor named Mickey Goldfine gifted me carte blanche on about a dozen exclusive wines, which means he paid for the privilege of letting me drink and write about wines (including champagnes) that I normally would not be able to afford.  And so, I selected the Vauversin Champagne, which earns one of the highest demarcations of official approval — the Grand Cru.

I’d never tried the Vauversin before. Let me be clear. I love and will support the boutique vineyards, which are smaller, often family-run estates. They aren’t the big names (DO NOT BUY DOM PERIGNON OR CRISTAL, which are ripoffs….the small family-owned vineyards are better champagnes for much less the cost). Vauversin is one of many champagnes which produce perhaps 1 percent the volume of the Dom, and drink much better at only 1/3rd of the price…..fastest way to know a clueless wine dope is seeing some rich dork who buys Dom and Cristal…..oh, is it clear yet that I LOATH Dom Perignon and Cristal? if not, let me make that VERY clear.

Here’s some exclamation points…. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Okay, now to the Vauversin…..

This bubbly cost $62 a bottle.  That’s perfectly in line with Grand Cru Champagnes in this class.

First impression:  A bit more acidity than expected.  The Vauversin drinks a little sharper than other champagnes.  I’d also read about hints of strawberry, but I didn’t get that.  Instead, I give it a more metallic grade, which isn’t bad — just different.  Unique characteristics, worth trying.  But also not something that blows me away.

But you have to love the history behind this vintner.  This vineyard knows what they are doing (one reason I wanted to try one).  The Vauversin family have been making wine in the Grand Cru village of Oger since 1640!

“….sits on the chalky Côte des Blancs escarpment South of Epernay, an area renowned for its impressive Chardonnay Champagnes. The Laurent’s attitude and ethos towards winemaking is clear; be less intrusive, simpler and allow the full flavor and incredible subtlety of the Chardonnay grape assert itself.”

Final thoughts:  Glad I tried it.  Impressive.  Enjoyable.  But I wouldn’t pay $62 out of pocket as I think there are better comparables, and certainly as-good champagnes in the $35-50 range.

Again, thank you to Mickey Goldfine for making this experience and adventure possible.

Grade (100 point scale): 93
Value: (10 point scale): 4
Price: $62
Recommended: Yes, if cost is no issue. Otherwise, no.

1 Comment

  1. Totally with you on not paying for big name Champagne bottlers, complete rip-off. I’m currently in France and can get some really enjoyable Champagne bottles for under 20€. My father-in-law had a guy he use to buy cases of great Champagne for about 10€ a bottle. The guy was a grower who sent most of his production to the big name bottlers. He and a number of other growers in the region started a co-op where they would do there own bottlings of there productions and produced some really nice bottles for the price.

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