We are now importing four Champagne Houses direct from the source in Champagne, France.
This means none of the extra costs for wholesalers and agents and that we have complete control over the quality of shipping. Given Champagne is a delicate beast and will spend well over a month in transit we spend a bit extra on the shipping, using only refrigerated containers or 'reefers' to bring the Champagne direct from the winery to our own warehouse. Relatively speaking, importing direct is quick and enables us to preserve quality and freshness.
It is also very exciting to source superb Champagne that offers exceptional 'bang for buck'. As Champagne lovers we’d grown dissatisfied with the range of quality Champagne available in Australia and its value for money. Australia is the 6th biggest market for Champagne outside of France and we drink almost 10 times as much of it as we did at the beginning of the millennium - 8 million bottles annually, making us one of the biggest consumers of Champagne per capita outside of France. Yet we are almost at the bottom of the list of prestige Champagne sales and the lowest consumers of Grower and Co-operative Champagne. So we set out to find some superb Champagne to import direct.
Over the last couple of years we shortlisted about 300 different Champagne Houses and had about 120 meetings at Prowein and in Champagne itself. The net result has been our importing of just 11 Champagnes from four exceptional producers, Roger Brun (Grand Cru, Ay) , Bernard Remy, Le Mesnil (Grand Cru Le Mesnil) and Champagne Bouché Père et Fils (8 of their 9 vineyards are Grand or Premier Cru). 7 out of the 10 Champagnes we now import are from Grand Cru rated villages (in the top 6% of vineyards in Champagne) and most of them are available for less than $100 a bottle. Our brief was to find the best Champagne we could that also offered exceptional value for money. The journey will continue too, so stay tuned.
This is100% Chardonnay from the exceptional Grand Cru Village of Les Mesnil-sur-Oger in the Cote des Blancs – the finest village for Chardonnay in all of Champagne. The wine offers an intensity, minerality and depth of flavour which mark it as exceptional. We found citrus, fresh brioche, fresh mushroom, lemon pith, chalky elements and lightly grilled nuts and brilliant freshness and life. The... Learn More
The 'Sublime' Grand Cru is an exquisite vintage which offers an exceptionally fine mousse or bead. The nose offers incredible richness and intensity with aromas of, baked bread, cashew and citrus zest, fresh mushroom and toasty notes to finish. Typical of Le Mesnil this offers all of the hallmark chalkiness and minerality of the Cote Des Blancs but with more richness than is traditional. The... Learn More
The 'Prestige' Grand Cru is made without malolactic fermentation, a technique reserved for the best Champagnes which have the fruit intensity to develop on lees in the bottle for many years before release. In this vintage we found concentrated green apple and blossoms, Brioche, choux pastry, chalkiness, and bready notes derived from many years ageing on yeast in the bottle. This is potent,... Learn More
A stunningly complex Champagne. The nose offers mushroom and truffle, shortbread and stonefruits too. The palate offers all of the above and a meatiness from the Pinot Noir component. As the wine opens there is also nectarine and apple. Persistence of flavour and intensity are... Learn More
Crisp and tight with honeydew melon and lemon on the nose. Lemon zest, apples and a hint of jasmine on the palate with amazing intensity and length. The crescendo is particularly intense. Great food wine.... Learn More
Rich and decadent with a hard cheese nuttiness. There’s truffle, fig, and white blossoms here too along with lemon and just a waft of lavender. This is serious kit from one of the greatest, if not the greatest sub region of Champagne, Le Mesnil. Take your time with this one as it opens up long after... Learn More
Complexity and mouth filling flavour! A blend of 85% pinot an 15% Chardonnay from the exceptional ‘Ay’ Grand Cru sub region of Champagne. There toasty brioche, oyster-shell, red apple and red apple skin, grapefruit and a fantastic mouthfeel. Complex and persistent, perhaps because 50% of the blend comprises reserve wine from exceptional vintages. This is a truly exceptional... Learn More
Rated by Champagne expert Michael Edwards as a truly great wine. It’s incredibly powerful and complex, offering up mushroom, truffles, forest floor, oyster shell, red apples, walnut skin, spice, yeastiness and oak. Powerful, complex, beguiling, mouth and sense... Learn More
With just 3 grams per litre of sugar, this is an extra dry Champagne vinified in 100% old French oak and bottled unfiltered. This is absolutely powerhouse Grand Cru Pinot Noir packed with a density of flavour sufficient to work even main courses. Amazing with seafood. Watch it open up like a table... Learn More
A brilliantly alive and zesty blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. Crisp green and red apple, strawberries, along with a little lemon zest. There’s also toastiness, vegemite and some shortbread. This one has spent 4 years on lees in bottle prior to disgorgement, remarkable for an entry level product and testament to the quality of fruit and this producer.... Learn More
Primarily Grand Cru fruit here in the super intense and fresh Blanc de Blancs. Aromas of grapefruit, toastiness and lemon along with a little honey. There’s chalkiness and minerality on the palate along with plenty of creaminess which softens the pristine and searing acidity.... Learn More
A staggering 10 years on lees for this amazing Vintage Champagne giving this wine great youthfulness and depth of flavour and complexity. Fresh green apples, almond, citrus, butteriness, cheese and yeast. An exceptional Vintage champagne produced primarily from Grand Cru... Learn More
A staggering 10 years on lees for this amazing Champagne comprised of 40% fruit from the 2005 vintage. 30% has spent time in oak. The wine has also spent 10 years in the bottle on lees prior to disgorgement. Lots going on here - grilled nuts, lemon curd, oyster shell, brioche and white flowers. Poised, delicate and... Learn More