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A couple months ago, we introduced the SommSelect family to a brand-new discovery in Grower Champagne: Lacourte-Godbillon. Since then we’ve become even more obsessed with this small estate, which is expertly run by a very talented couple. And, based on the reaction to our first offer, we think many of you agree! That’s why we’re doubly excited to have procured their very limited, extremely elegant, best-in-class rosé. Made from 100% Pinot Noir grown on the distinct terroir of their home in Écueil, this silky, sexy, and downright seductive Champagne looks almost as beautiful as it tastes. We’re already in love, and soon you will be, too. It seems only a matter of time before Lacourte hits the big time and becomes as scarce as the other top growers, so this is your opportunity to get in on the ground floor. Grab a six pack or two, save 10%, and stock up while you still can!
Since 2006, when Geraldine Lacourte and her husband, Richard, left high-powered city jobs to return to her family’s business, this boutique estate has garnered rave reviews from the wine press and industry insiders for all the right reasons: They are farming organically and biodynamically and vinifying their wines plot-by-plot, in the manner of the greatest small producers of the moment. They’ve also received expert counsel from Eric Rodez, former chef du cave at Krug and a star grower in his own right, and it shows in the wines. What you see in front of you is a grower Champagne poised for superstardom, albeit one whose price doesn’t (yet) align with its superior quality. But make no mistake, Geraldine and Richard have built a very solid foundation for success. Early adopters will reap the benefits of their work too, which is why we are very proud to bring you this dear-to-our-hearts discovery.
The Lacourte family has been farming the unique terroir around the village of Écueil for generations, but like many of their neighbors, they sold mostly to the local co-op until Geraldine’s parents started bottling some wine under their own label in 1968. When Geraldine and Richard decided to come aboard, they set about learning as much as they could about farming and winemaking. They had the good fortune to connect with Eric Rodez, and, with his help, they zeroed in on the art of blending micro-parcels to achieve the utmost balance, textural complexity, and pure drink-it-up deliciousness. They converted all their vineyards to organic farming and began using the marketing and business savvy from their previous careers to get their wines in front of the right people. Fast-forward 15 years and all that work is really paying off.
What sets Écueil apart from the surrounding Premier and Grand Crus of the Montagne de Reims is the high percentage of sand mixed in with the clay. This adds an ethereal lift to the power and richness of the Pinot Noir, and showcases the lovely balance of pretty, red fruits and chalky minerality of the Lacourte rosé. Geraldine puts about one third of the fruit into barrels for fermentation, the rest is done in steel tanks, which adds depth and texture to the finished wine. Serve this Premier Cru rosé at about 45 degrees in an all-purpose stem and you’ll immediately dive into an ocean of ripe strawberries, tart blackberries, rose petals, wildflowers, lemon zest, earth, and a core of classic, saline minerality. The texture is both delicate and sumptuous, the acidity is lively. I would love to sip this seductive beauty with smoked duck salad on a warm, summer day. But I will also want a stash around for the holidays, and you should too. Stock up today!
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