The great grower Champagnes that excite Champagne lovers these days tend to fall into a certain category, with low dosage, low sulphur, and a decidedly edgy vibe. We love them. But one grower has managed to gain worldwide fame—not to mention a cult-like obsession here in the U.S.—without going in that direction: Bérêche & Fils.On paper, at least, everything about Bérêche is classical. This starts with history, as this is a domaine that was founded just before the U.S. Civil War. It continues with land. They don't farm some obscure corner of Champagne, but in its historic heart, with plots scattered around the Montagne de Reims and the Vallée de la Marne.Traditional and classical, perhaps, and yet something sets it apart: sheer excellence. Raphaël and Vincent Bérêche's intense focus on high quality farming and precise work in the cellar is exactly the sort of hard work that was too often missing from the pre-grower Grand Marques. And it results in wines that people—no matter how geeky their Champagne tastes—just love.
Elegant , Minerally
Champagne boasts some of the world’s greatest luxury brands with Krug, Cristal and, of course, Dom Perignon. But it’s also home to hundreds of small dynamic producers—farmers who grow their own grapes (often organically) and make (often with natural methods) tiny amounts of pure and absolutely delicious wine that reflect the individual personalities of their villages and terroirs. Toast with these wines, for sure. But also treat them like the great wines they are: taste, drink, explore!