Champagne Les Rendez-vous de Billecart-Salmon No. 2 Extra Brut Debuts
Les Rendez-vous de Billecart-Salmon No. 2 Extra Brut
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It was in 2020 that Champagne Billecart-Salmon made a rare addition to its range: a series of limited release cuvées called Les Rendez-vous de Billecart-Salmon.
These are small batches of special bottlings that are designed to be drunk young and show one particular facet of a grape or a vineyard.
The new series
The first wine in the series, Les Rendez-vous de Billecart-Salmon No. 1, was released in September 2020 and was, unusally, made from 100% Pinot Meunier. This year saw the release of Les Rendez-vous de Billecart-Salmon No. 2 – once again a Blanc de Noirs but this time made from 100% Pinot Noir.
Experimentation and provenance
The wines are a kind of by-product of the ongoing research at the house, the result of “experimental small bottlings,” says Mathieu Roland-Billecart, CEO of the house, who explains that the wine was fermented and aged in 100% stainless steel. “Why? We really tried to understand the evolution, so stainless steel stays closer to the terroir,” he says. “Terroirs that are very important to Billecart-Salmon. Pinot Noirs from Ambonnay and Verzenay make up 94% of this blend which are at the more elegant end of what we find in our blends – finesse, elegance and balance are our house DNA.”
He also reveals that the base vintage of the non-vintage wine was 2014 at 78%, with the remaining 22% from 2012. The wine then spent 65 months on lees before being disgorged with a dosage of 2g/l in December 2020.
But the house DNA is also evident in the sleekness of the wine and its precision: “Our wines, because of their cool fermentation, have a stronger backbone of acidity. This wine has a very strong Billecart-Salmon footprint on it,” Roland-Billecart says.
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