Champagne Bruno Paillard Assemblage Extra Brut 2012
Champagne Bruno Paillard Assemblage Extra Brut 2012 This “Assemblage” is only made in the very best vintages – 2012 is just the tenth time ever in over 40 years!
Flavor Profile: Cherries, plums, peaches, sun-dried figs, white flowers, spicy ginger, toasted hazelnuts, baked apples, dusty chocolate, and salty rusted iron
Time on Lees: 96 months
Disgorgement Date: November 2020
Dosage: 4.5 grams per liter
Score: DC96, JS94
Why We Love It...
We love it when Champagne gets a little love from the critics. 96 points from Decanter is quite the honor, but the inclusion on their 2021 Wines of the Year list… that is what really puts a smile on my face! Bruno Paillard is simply world-class Champagne – made in a rich, leesy, and downright sexy style. If you’ve never experienced the wonder of Bruno Paillard before – today is the day!
Bruno Paillard was born and raised in Champagne, and like his forebears going all the way back to 1704 – he started working in wine at a young age. By 22, he was a broker of fine Champagnes, with a deep and extensive knowledge of the great houses and popular styles. But he wasn’t satisfied, and increasingly concentrated on his plan to make a change. In 1981, he quit his job, and as the story goes, sold his jaguar, leveraging all that he had in order to purchase fruit and rent space in a cellar where he could make his own Champagne. It was the first new house in Reims in over a century, and the future was far from secured, but nevertheless, Champagne Bruno Paillard was born.
Now, it is his equally passionate and knowledgeable daughter, Alice, at the helm of the house. Over the years, the family has acquired vineyards of their own, with 25 hectares of vines, including 12 hectares of exclusive Grand Crus. This provides more than half of their fruit – relying on select growers in over 30 different villages to provide the rest, with most of these independent growers partnering with Paillard for decades now.
The “Assemblage” is the pinnacle of the portfolio, and only made in the rare vintages that provide a glimpse into the sublime for Bruno Paillard. As each bottling is incredibly unique, a different artist has graced the label – with the honor this year going to Claude Viallat and his piece, “Sillon”. Beyond the label, the real art is in the bottle, where this 60% pinot noir and 40% chardonnay has transformed over 8 years on the lees – into a powerfully rich, intensely savory, and impressively bright wine that the folks at Paillard affectionately and appropriately described as “gluttonous”. If ever there was a Champagne that consumes you – even whilst you whittle it down to a mere residue in your glass – this is that wine. Complex aromas of cherries, and plums, and peaches, with sun-dried figs, white flowers, and spicy ginger. Sensations of toasted hazelnuts, and baked apples, with dusty chocolate, and salty, rusted iron… and so much more! The wine broods and stomps, and reveals itself in time – so don’t be afraid to swirl, and even decant… the wine isn’t going anywhere, anytime soon, I promise! Absolutely enthralling stuff from first whiff to final sip… a resounding triumph of a wine that deserves our collective attention. We got absolutely everything that we could – but only 2,100 cases were ever crafted, and far, far less ever made it over the Atlantic to us. Get a couple, and more if you're able, and I assure you, you’ll be thrilled you did!
Appellation: Montagne de Reims
Varietal: Champagne Blends
Blend: 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay
Winemaker: Laurent Guyot and Alice Paillard
Production: 2163 cases
Pair it with: Whole Red Snapper with Sweet and Sour Chilies
About the Producer
Champagne Bruno Paillard, established in 1981 by Bruno Paillard himself, is a relatively young yet highly esteemed Champagne house with a profound commitment to crafting exceptional cuvées from the region's finest terroirs. A pioneer in the Champagne industry, Bruno Paillard introduced a "zero dosage" style, emphasizing the purest expression of the grapes and terroir, which set a new benchmark in Champagne production. With a strong focus on Chardonnay grapes, the house sources fruit from exceptional vineyards in various grand and premier cru sites across the region. Their "N.P.U." and "Blanc de Blancs" cuvées are celebrated for their precision and elegance, reflecting Bruno Paillard's dedication to creating Champagnes that embody a sense of place and time, and his unique vision has earned the house a coveted position among connoisseurs and collectors worldwide.
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