Pinot Noir, Chardonnay
    Champagne, France
  • SIZE
    Hand harvested, manual press, fermented in tank.
    20 months minimum on the lees, 9 g/L dosage.

Davy Dosnon runs this small, artisan cellar in Avirey-Lingey. Dosnon pursues sustainable viticulture and makes his wines in a fairly non-manipulated style. All of the wines are fermented and aged in oak (although they rarely show overt influence from the wood) and are bottled with low dosage. Based on what I have tasted so far, Dosnon is one of Champagne’s most promising young wineries.

91pts Wine Spectator: This harmonious version is bright, with tangy acidity enlivening the flavors of cantaloupe, star fruit, pastry cream and lemon preserves. Offers a chalk-tinged undertow and a spiced finish that lingers.

91 W&S: Mostly pinot noir, with 10 percent chardonnay, this brisk wine has the fresh red blush of apple skins. Its malic acidity adds tension and length to the flavors, which benefit from enough dosage to feel generous, the red fruit and toasted hazelnut savor lasting with a lingering buzz of energy.

A model for the future of small, artisinal Champagne houses, Champagne Dosnon & Lepage is the brainchild of Davy Dosnon and Simon-Charles Lepage, who grew up together in this beautiful region of rolling hills, wheat fields, and champagne vines. While Davy studied viticulture and worked in top Burgundy wine houses before moving back to Champagne, Simon-Charles studied criminal law in Paris, but moved back to the village of Lingey in the Côte de Bars region of Champagne for the peace and quiet.

Simon-Charles and Davy are turning out mineral, vinous bottlings of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Fermenting entirely in former Puligny-Montrachet barrels, the champagnes might as well be Chablis with bubbles for all of their mineral-packed goodness. Dosages are very low (in some cases as little as 4 grams per liter) and the wines benefit from the restraint. None of the wines is fined or filtered.

Located less than an hour north of the Burgundian village of Chablis, this region of the Aube valley has more in common with northern Burgundy than with the rest of Champagne. Simon-Charles and Davy are intent on showing that difference to the world. Really masterful work from a lost region of Champagne.