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Champagne Egly-Ouriet Coteaux Champenois Ambonnay Rouge
It is not commonly known that Egly Ouriet is also one of France's great still Pinot Noir producers and, that in France at least, the Ambonnay Rouge--a 100% Pinot Noir dry red--is as sought-after as their sparkling wines. Michel Bettane and Thierry Desseauve have written [The World's Greatest Wines]; "...the most recent vintages of the red Coteaux Champenois have revolutionised the style, proving themselves worthy of comparison with many of the greatest Burgundies."
It comes from a single parcel of very old Pinot Noir vines, situated mid-slope in the Grand Cru of Ambonnay. This vineyard is in a slight depression that forms a kind of amphitheatre or sun trap, and this, combined with the old vines and low yields, leads to a Coteaux like no other. Yields are typically below Burgundy's Grand Cru limits (something like 35 hl/ha on average), and the wine is vinified entirely in barrique. A total of only 200 cases are produced each year, and it's only bottled in the finest years. Another feature of the wine is the 20-24 months élevage it receives in Dominique Laurent Magic cask Tronçais barrels, followed by hand-bottling without filtration. Importers Notes
The 2018 Coteaux Champenois Cuvée des Grands Côtés is laced with bright red berry fruit, spice and new French oak. In this vintage, Egly's Coteaux Champenois is lithe and gracious more than it is rich, as it has been in some recent editions. I would prefer to drink it over the next few years. 92 points, Antonio Galloni, Vinous
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