NV Francis Orban Extra Brut Rose, Champagne, France (750ml)

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Léopold Orban was one of the first Récoltant-Manipulants (A producer who sources fruit exclusively from their own vineyards) in the small village of Leuvrigny in the 1920s. Léopold’s great grandson, Francois, took over as proprietor in 1999 at the young age of 19, tending 18 acres of 30-40 year old vineyards in and around the villages of Leuvrigny and Sainte-Gemme. Located in the heart of the Marne Valley, the domaine focuses on Pinot Meunier which comprises 90% of its vineyard holdings - ideal considering the sandy, clay-rich soils of the region suit the grape very well. Often considered merely a blending grape throughout other regions in Champagne, Pinot Meunier has pride of place in the Marne Valley and can offer wines of impressive depth, character and finesse. This 100% Pinot Meunier Extra Brut Rosé Champagne is a stunning example of this lesser known Champagne grape. The grapes were hand-harvested and directly pressed. The must was fermented on indigenous yeasts in temperature-controlled, stainless-steel tanks. 14% of the blend is Pinot Meunier still red wine which was added for color. It was aged for three years in bottle and given a dosage of 3 grams/L. This Champagne is bright pink in color with orange flecks and has persistent perlage. On the nose you’ll find fresh raspberries and white strawberry notes. The flavors reflect more tart cherry, under ripe yellow peach, and berry shortbread. The frothiness of the mousse is juxtaposed with the intensity of the flavors. What a lovely example of Pinot Meunier’s complexity and earthiness. Cheers!

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