Franck Peillot Bugey Montagnieu Brut (2017) NV
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Press 4 White • May 2023 Direct Press Selection
Franck Peillot started working with his father in 1981 and took over the family estate in 1985. He carries on as the fourth generation of winemakers at the estate. Peillot, known for his work with still wines from Altesse, chooses to invert the dominant grapes of most cru Montagnieu sparkling wines by making his wine from 50% Mondeuse and 50% Altesse + Chardonnay as opposed to the Chardonnay dominant wines usually found from the cru wines. This Champagne-method sparkler is not vintage-dated but Peillot’s Brut is always single vintage, this one hailing from 2017. Average vine age here is around 30 years old with some plots reaching near 60 years old. They're also planted on a 50% incline.
Much of the Altesse is planted on rocky limestone scree on a steep slope near the village Montagnie and are trained individually in local traditional gobelet sur echalas style, which translates to goblet on poles, search for a photo on the web it’s pretty whimsical. The Mondeuse comes from flatter, sandier, red clay soils downslope from town, close to the Rhone River. The different grapes are hand harvested and vinified separately, parcel by parcel. The clusters are direct-pressed and spontaneously fermented in tank, then the blending takes place in winter. The blended wine is bottled with a liquor di tirage (a solution of wine, sugar and yeast) and finishes fermentation in bottle then disgorged and finished with a 6 gram dosage. Although this wine is vinified as a white wine the Mondeuse shines through and offers up aromas of strawberries followed by vanilla and creme notes. The palate is bright and refreshing with a chalky minerality while the vanilla and cream are echoed here giving a great lengthy finish. We don't always include bubbles in the wine club, but this one not only speaks to the history of the region but is honestly one of the best bottles of sparkling wine we've tasted, especially for the price. Jeremy Hernandez