It is easy to see from our sortiment that Winzer-Champagnes are our passion. One producer, where we are really prepared to make an exception is Billecart-Simon, especially with their Extra Brut 2008.
2008 is without question an exceptional vintage and for those looking for Champagnes to lay down for 10 years plus, 2008 would be our choice vintage. The 2008 from Billecart Simon is a blend of 65% Pinot noir and 35% Chardonnay from Gand cru and Premier Cru sites, it was released on to the market in March 2019 with a dosage of 4g/l. What however makes this champagne exceptional for us is Billecart Simons methods.
Firstly the champagne goes through a process called double débourbage, this means after the first clarification process direct after the pressing, the juice is held at 4°C for at least 48 hours without the addition fo any enzymes, wild yeasts are removed without oxidation taking place. This is an elaborate, expensive and time consuming process which results in a very pure juice.
The first fermentation takes place at 13°C , never above 14° C with cultured yeast and natural yeasts and lasts for about 4 weeks. Such a fermentation process gives the champagne an impressive freshness and elegance which are lost if the ferementation occurs at 20°C.
Billecart-Simon have increased the amount of oak, the barrels used come from Burgund and have 6-7 years of use before being used for the champagne. Toast notes are not discernible in the champagne yet the oak adds structure allowing for long ageing.
The 2008 is at the moment in an embryonic state, the freshness is the defining feature, other aromas are there, salinity, oyster shells, citrus, a light creaminess; this champagne definetly needs a few years to unwind and show its full potential. Considering the prices of other big name houses releasesfrom 2008, Billecart-Simon millésime offers great value and in 10 – 15 years time will not disappoint.
If you cannot wait, we would strongly recommend drinking this champagne with food, prefereably seafood, oysters, scallops, ceviche or sashimi.