NV Egly-Ouriet 1er Cru Les Vignes de Bisseuil
Vintages: 2018 (60%), 2017 (20%), 2016 (20%)
Disgorgement: July 2023
Time on lees: 48 months
This is the third release of Egly’s sole Chardonnay dominant cuvée and it’s the first release to include three vintages in the blend. The wine is drawn from a plot of vines on the south-facing slopes of Bisseuil, a village just to the east of the famous Grand Cru communes of Aÿ and Mareuil-sur-Aÿ.
While these two latter villages are renowned for Pinot Noir, Bisseuil is more known for Chardonnay; it’s the only village in the area that has more Chardonnay than Pinot Noir in its vineyards.
The blend here is 70% Chardonnay with 15% Pinot Noir and 15% Meunier. The Egly Bisseuil vines cover 1.5 hectares and span two lieux-dits. They have now been farmed by the Egly family for more than seven years—Francis and Annick Egly purchased these vines in anticipation of their children Clémence and Charles joining the domaine.
The vine age averages 40 years. Les Vignes de Bisseuil was vinified entirely in barrel and spent four years in the cellar prior to disgorgement with two grams per litre dosage.
This is a fascinating contrast to the rest of the range. As you might expect, it has a much more ‘Chardonnay’ personality with waves of orchard fruit, white flowers, fresh butter and even almond-oil notes. Although these elements suggest richness, the wine is, in fact, bright and full of energy with a powdery, pithy close. It has all the vinosity, texture and thrilling tension for which this great grower is renowned. With the outstanding 2018 vintage forming 60% of the cuvée, this is far and away the finest Les Vignes de Bisseuil released to date.
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