"Fabrice Pouillon was born into a family who had farmed grapes for generations, but his grandfather, Roger was one of the very first growers to start bottling his own wine in Champagne, rather than selling to one of the Grandes Marques."
Fabrice joined the family business in 1998, and he quickly began working to convert the vineyards to biodynamic viticulture, with an eye to improving the overall health of the fruit. His care for quality extends to his winemaking, where all juice flows via gravity into their vessel, where they are allowed to ferment naturally. Even the pressings are done carefully, in fractional steps, a departure from most in Champagne who care more about speed than exacting quality. The results are stupendous: both freshness and concentration of flavor abound.
The Grand Vallée is mostly Pinot Noir (60%) with Meunier and Chardonnay, representing the full range of the house's holdings. The current vintage is blended with the previous vintage with some of the perpetual reserve added as well, creating terrific complexity for an "entry" wine, sumptuous and saline. His Rosé is a maceration style of 100% Pinot Noir, where the fruit will sit with its skins for around 12 hours prior to pressing. To add another layer of vinosity, 80% of the current vintage is held for 8 months, and the 20% is comprised of the prior vintage's remainder which had aged for more than 18 months in barrique. This creates a rounder texture to soften the delicate tannin resulting from the maceration. Both snappy and unctuous, this unwinds in the glass to reveal incredible depth. Les Terres Froides is created from a cool (Froid= cold), half hectare parcel of entirely Chardonnay in the Montagne de Reims. Chalk and clay soils give both breadth and energy, full of soft, ripe citrus and incredible, thirst-inducing length.