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Ulysse Collin 'Les Maillons' Blanc de Noirs Extra Brut

The current release is based on 2015 with 60% reserve wine from 2014, disgorged in March 2019. This beautifully textured and perfumed Blanc de Noirs comes from a site called Les Maillons in Barbonne-Fayel, near the town of Sézanne (in the Côte de Sézanne). Of Les Maillons' six hectres, Collin farms 2.5, and is the only grower to work the soil here. The commute by tractor takes a good two hours each way from the cellar! The Ulysse Collin parcel was originally planted with massale vines in 1971 on a slope of heavy, iron-rich clay. This is a superb Pinot terroir and can ripen the grapes to north of 12% potential alcohol easily--something very rare in Champagne. Despite the power, the location of the site also helps to conserve acidity and freshness thanks to its ventilated, east-facing exposure. The current release includes a significantly higher portion of reserve wine than the last release (and is of course all the better for it). It was aged in three- to six-year-old barrels (including some foudres) for the first seven months of its life. Disgorged with only 2.4 grams.

"The 2015 Extra-Brut Blanc de Noirs Les Maillons is ample, creamy and also incredibly inviting. More than anything else, the 2015 stands out for its textural sophistication and total class. Here too, the significant presence of 2014 reserve wines (60%) works beautifully in capturing an attractive interplay of fruit richness, savory complexity and layers of texture. Gorgeous Pinot aromatics and flavors meld together in this striking, effortless Champagne from Olivier Collin. Dosage is 2.4 grams per liter." 95 points,

Antonio Galloni