Blanc de blancs champagnes are made from only (white) chardonnay grapes. The translation from French is literally white wine made from white grapes. Blanc de blancs champagnes have a unique character that can be lighter and more elegant in the absence of red grapes which add robustness.
Blanc de blancs champagnes
It has taken me longer to come around to blanc de blancs champagnes. For a long time I complained they were a bit “one dimensional” for my liking. To be fair, they do contain only one grape variety BUT playing with the blends of crus and vintages (for NV obviously) and ageing will produce elegant and often spectacular wines.
Chardonnay grapes are known to mature and ripen more slowly than black grapes so they age very well. If you want to enjoy blanc de blancs champagnes at their best, try an older vintage as aged champagnes will show off the style.
Homework assignment #Champagneschool
So what to try?
Ruinart, Taittinger and Dellamotte are houses which are known to specialise in chardonnay and blanc de blancs champagne I thoroughly enjoy their champagnes and you will find good quality blanc de blancs NV and vintages.
If you want your mind totally blown, the Charles Heidsieck blanc des millenaries is aged for 17 years (yes, I said 17 years!). And it is nothing short of spectacular (of course priced accordingly).
There are a number of famous cuvee de prestige blanc de blancs champagnes such as the Dom Ruinart, Salon (from the house of Dellamotte), Taittinger’s Comtes de Champagne, and Krug’s Clos des Mesnil. The Krug Clos des Mesnil is the only blanc de blanc listed here I haven’t tried… I wait patiently!
Santé… especially to my chardie fiends out there xx
Make sure you post a pic and tag @bubbleandflute #Champagneschool to let me know you’re doing your homework and what you think!
- Chardonnay are actually not the only grapes that can be used in blanc de blancs champagnes. Producers are permitted to use three other types of grapes (Pinot blanc, Petit Meslier and Arbanne) but we do – read more here about champange grapes.
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