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Champagne Varnier-Fanniere Esprit de Craie Extra Brut NV Wine - Last Bottle

Champagne Varnier-Fanniere Esprit de Craie Extra Brut NV

Over 34% off on this 91 Point Extra Brut Blanc de Blancs!



Flavor Profile: Honeysuckle, limes, green apples, golden plums, clove, pink peppercorn, and tarragon
Time on Lees: 24 months
Dosage: 6 g/L
Score: 91

Why We Love It...

Welp, we thought that last bottle of Varnier-Fannière might sell out…but hey, we’re Last Bubbles and there’s always more Champagne to be had! This is the estate’s “second-label” called “Esprit de Craie” or “the spirit of chalk” – their homage to the Côte des Blancs that they call home. In this release, it is all chardonnay, and Grand Cru fruit from Avize and Oger, no less, just aged for a little less time on the lees. It’s fantastic stuff, showcasing robust flavors and powerful intensity, with fine, linear acidity that makes this a fantastic shellfish option.

I won’t trouble you with the family history and details this time around…since we just discussed at some length, and trust me – you certainly do not want to run the risk of missing out on TWO delectable Varnier-Fannière Champagnes in a single day!

This Extra Brut, despite not being labeled as such – is both Grand Cru, and a Blanc de Blancs, with a base that is mostly from the 2018 vintage. It seems the family’s notion with these labels is to perhaps one day allow this to be a growth section of the portfolio – and allow them to explore working with other growers, and other blends, to craft these wines in the future. But for now, it is simply another stellar offering in their impressive portfolio, and we’ll go back to the Terry Theisse well, and share his cut-to-the-chase impression. “If this were the regular NV Brut from a “new” Champagne grower, she’d pick up a proud American importer in a flash.” 

In my own evaluation of the wine, it is floral and chalky, more linear, and less expressive than the Grand Cru. Zesty and powerful on the palate, with honeysuckle, limes, green apples, golden plums, and plenty of spice – such as clove, pink peppercorn, and tarragon. Nicely fresh throughout, with a bright and pure focus, and the lesser dosage granting this speed and length, making for a perfect aperitif and first-course style of Champagne. We got the same amount as the Grand Cru, and you wouldn’t be amiss to set this up as a side-by-side comparison if possible! At the least, you’ll want to taste one of the excellent wines from Varnier-Fannière and we’ll see what we can do about acquiring more for the future! 

Fizz Meter

Technical Details

Country: France
Region: Champagne
Appellation: Cote des Blancs
Varietal: Chardonnay
Winemaker: Valérie Varnier
Alcohol: 12%
Pair it with: Shellfish

About the Producer

Since 1820, Ameztoi has been the most respected producer in the region of Getariako Txakolina. They produce both traditional wines in large barrels and they were the inventor of rosé txakolina and one of the first to do méthode traditionnelle sparkling wines in the region. They own 20 hectares of vineyards planted high on the seaside cliffs of the village of Getaria. Ignacio Ameztoi is fifth generation and has played an important role in the development and innovation in Getariako Txakolina over the last 10 years.

Champagne Varnier-Fanniere Esprit de Craie Extra Brut NV




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