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Know any importers of the smaller champagne houses?

c
canuckchuck Mar 1, 2012 05:07 AM

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?

  1. sloweater Mar 1, 2012 07:46 AM

    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

    http://groupesoleil.com/

    2 Replies
    1. re: sloweater
      c
      canuckchuck Mar 1, 2012 01:43 PM

      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

      1. re: canuckchuck
        AzulH Mar 1, 2012 01:50 PM

        Arthur Sellers & Company
        (905) 842-2684
        www.arthursellers.com

        Specialises in all the wines from Forget-Brimont, a really exceptional small producer.

    2. estufarian Mar 1, 2012 07:11 AM

      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
      http://www.drinksontario.com/searchresults.php?id=all&product_type=Sparkling+Wines&product_country=France&supplier_name=all

      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
      http://www.vintages.com/index.shtml
      (which is their marketing blurb) - or for a comprehensive review of all releases you can check
      http://www.vintageassessments.com/
      (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:

      CHAMPAGNE
      March 3
      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

      March 17
      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

      March 31
      155119 BARON-FUENTÉ GRAND MILLÉSIME BRUT CHAMPAGNE 1998 $51.95

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