A single-vineyard Brut Nature that has aged for nearly two decades: You can search a lifetime for a Champagne of this price-to-pedigree, but you won’t come close to matching it.
Tarlant’s “Cuvée Louis” shows a mature, deep yellow core with an amber hue leading out to rim. After it warms up a bit, seductive aromas fill the air: dried pineapple, preserved lemon, pastries, cut yellow apples, bruised Bosc pear, damp yellow flowers, honey, stirred lees, and a constant presence of crushed chalk. Perhaps even more impressive was revisiting this on the second day—a persistent bead still rose up and there wasn’t any sign of fatigue on the palate, which is a tour de force.
This is a full-bodied Champagne that is simultaneously rich and bone-dry. Dense, mature yellow fruits are burrowed in its core with an undying wave of chalk minerality. After air, savory dried mushroom and white truffle will also make a much welcomed appearance. Remember, it has seen decades of aging, so be sure to show a bit of patience when pouring into a wide-mouthed tulip or even a Burgundy stem. Spend hours with this ‘wise’ bottle and you’ll find more “data” packed into one ounce of it than you’ll find in most other Champagnes. It should be paired with dishes that incorporate, as the chefs like to say, “luxury ingredients”: caviar, foie, truffles, etc. Then again, you can go the high-low route and pair it with your most-trusted fried chicken preparation. It’s got the stuffing for it!