Sténopé 2012

Sténopé 2012
© Nicola Demoulin / photo provided

Champagne Devaux releases Sténopé 2012

New Release Champagne

The co-operative Champagne house based in the Aube subregion of Champagne has just released its latest vintage wine, resulting from an ongoing collaboration with Michel Chapoutier.

Taking its name from the French term, i.e. Sténopé, of some of the earliest photographic images, this Champagne collaboration that goes back to 2008 aims to be a portrait of a vintage and is the brainchild of Rhône valley supremo Michel Chapoutier and Devaux cellar master Michel Parisot.

Complexity of flavours

Parisot was in London to present the new vintage 2012 and explained the importance of oak fermentation for a large portion of the base wines, the stylistic decision not to allow the wines to undergo malo-lactic fermentation and the importance of long lees ageing for the base wines. “I want to get complexity from lees ageing, but I do not want a fat wine,” he says about his thinking. Avoiding malo-lactic fermentation, he says, helps him “to retain citrus and grapefruit flavours.”

Old vines and low dosage

He also noted that while Sténopé was blended from several parcels of vines across Champagne, the vines generally had an age of between 20 and 40 years – but he also points to a particularly old parcel of Chardonnay from Chouilly that was planted in 1913. All the Sténopé blends are roughly half Pinot Noir, half Chardonnay and 2012 is no exception: it was blended from 52% Pinot Noir and 48% Chardonnay and disgorged with a dosage of 5g/l.


Anne Krebiehl MW

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