• Barrat Masson Fleur de Craie Extra Brut Champagne

The Fleur de Craie (flower of chalk.) It is composed of mostly the 2013 vintage with a small reserve being made up of 2012 and 2011. Entirely Chardonnay, this is initially aged as a still wine on its lees for 9 months, with 90% of the cuvee going into stainless steel tanks and the remainder being aged in neutral oak. In bottle, your cuvee was aged for 32 months on its lees and finished with zero dosage. The nose shows a beguiling mix of clotted cream, a kiss of butterscotch, wet river stones, tart yellow plum, and a light saline note. The palate is clean with a flavor set of chalky minerality up front with lime zest, quince, yellow plum and light cream rounding out the palate. Tasting this across multiple days, this taunt, focused style of Champagne seems to call out for savory seafood, with broiled miso black cod being an excellent choice, and can age for up to a decade. D&M Tasting Notes

The domaine is quite new as their first vintage started in the quite challenging 2011 growing season. Before their inaugural release, Loïc Masson had taken the reigns of the family vineyards in 2005 in the tiny village of Bethon in the Côte de Sézanne region. The Cote de Sézanne is effectively a continuation of the Cote des Blancs, and like their northern neighbor, dominated by chalky soils.

He converted the farming of his vineyards to organic viticulture with the support of his wife, Aurélie Barrat. This they completed in 2009, paving the way to be certified organic by Ecocert. Theirs is a balanced union with Loïc focusing on the farming of the domaine’s 17 acres while Aurélie (a trained enologist) focuses on the cellar. While he was converting the land to organics she was going about setting up the winery; installing a Coquard wine press, and building out a vat and ageing cellar. 

Barrat Masson Fleur de Craie Extra Brut Champagne

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