Know any importers of the smaller champagne houses?
I was fortunate to recently spend some time in Champage where I found the wines of the smaller, relatively unknown producers to be often much more interesting (and vitually always less expensive) than those of the big houses/usual suspects that seem to be the only bottles to get on the LCBO and Vintages shelves. Focusing on Champagne only (yes I know there are some increasingly impressive sparkling wines emanating from many areas including here in Ontario - I am already a big fan of Henry of Pelham's Catherine Brut and also those of Huff Estate), does anyone know of an importer specializing in some of the lesser known producers?
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I also deal with Deron Mitchell - but Halpern tends to stock super-premium producers.And the Gosset is fantastic.
BUT be aware that nearly all private imports are by the case - regardless of producer (and importer).
Here's a partial list of other Houses that are imported
But the Vintages section of LCBO does an irregular job of bringing in smaller batches - typically it ramps up beore Xmas, so this is low season, but it's worth checking the bi-weekly releases, either on
(which is their marketing blurb) - or for a comprehensive review of all releases you can check
(this is a subscription system but the current release(s) is listed - for the tasting notes you have to pay) - for March releases there are:
173435 CHARLES MIGNON PREMIER CRU BRUT ROSÉ CHAMPAGNE $46.95
244103 NICOLAS MAILLART PLATINE PREMIER CRU BRUT CHAMPAGNE $46.95
722520 LANSON GOLD LABEL BRUT CHAMPAGNE $74.95
68288 HEIDSIECK & CO. MONOPOLE BLUE TOP BRUT CHAMPAGNE $49.95
989442 GOSSET GRAND ROSÉ BRUT CHAMPAGNE $79.95
9761 NICOLAS FEUILLATTE BLANC DE BLANCS BRUT CHAMPAGNE $73.95
155119 BARON-FUENTÉ GRAND MILLÉSIME BRUT CHAMPAGNE 1998 $51.95
If you're looking specifically for Grower Champagnes, Groupe Soleil is your best bet. Steven Cohen is your contact there. They carry a number of small, terroir driven champagne producers that also happen to be terrific value. Producers are listed below:
Andre Clouet, Bereche et Fils, Champagne Agrapart, Champagne Laherte, David Leclapart, Georges Laval, Guy Charlemagne, Jacquesson & Fils, R&L Legras
thanks for all of your feedback. some great resources indeed. Groupe Soleil's roster is very intriguing and I intent to drink my way through much of it in the months ahead in addition to some of other names (and the Gosset rose). fortunately I have a few friends with shared appreciation for bubbles so the case ordering won't be a problem. cheers