|NV Lamiable Brut
Sparkling; Champagne Blend; Champagne;
|This is going to be short. For real. Between a container arrival, selling 2005 Burgundy, and the holiday season, there’s not much time these days. However, I love Champagne, this is one of my favorites, and since the others cost anywhere from $20 to $100 more a bottle, I’m going to take a moment to talk Lamiable. I wasn’t going to write it up because Anya loves it so much, and I didn’t want to swoop on her pet Champagne. I asked her, she said it’s okay, but only because I like the wine as much as she does.Lamiable is the sparkling darling of the Wine House staff, and one of the best NV Grand Cru, grower Champagnes around. They’re a boutique operation, no advertising or marketing here, but thanks to yours trulies (us – plural), they have a following with both restaurants and our retail customers. For Champagne under $50, this trumps most all big houses and small growers. I’ll make the bold statement that I would pick this over many of the $70 and $80 vintage Champagnes out there. In fact that’s what we do. This time of year, David tells the Wine House staff that we can take a bottle from our inventory. What do we pick? We walk right past the vintage wines, and grab the NV Lamiable. In all fairness to the vintage cuvees, the NV owes part of its deliciousness to the older wine that is blended into it. It has those mature, complexity notes that some of the vintage dated bottles will develop with more time in the bottle. That doesn’t change the fact we could choose more expensive wines, but we go for this. Anya’s petting a bottle right now.So that’s that. Short and sweet. If you are in need of Champagne, tis the season after all, here’s what Anya and I drink. David took a bottle to his annual Champagne party. Peter drinks it. Chris and John too. Definitely the Wine House Pinot-based house (we are wine nerds after all) Champagne. I can’t speak for everyone, but each day I get to drink from a bottle of this is a good day. In the end, I think my strongest recommendation for a wine is when I drink it regularly. If Champagne is part of what makes our holiday special, then let’s drink special Champagne. – Ben Jordan|
Aside from the obligatory notes of baked bread and mineral, I get a nice peppery flavor/texture from the Pinot Noir as well as a citrus/acacia infusion that sits on top of the wine. There are some secondary aromas and flavors that come from the older wine in the blend, and the finish is quite long with a sense of the terroir of Lamiable.
Not to rail against the big houses, but let’s do that a little. This wine has true flavor, which is important when you can spend $40 and not get a whole lot more than bubbles and acidity. I have no problem with mass production and ubiquity of brands, but shouldn’t the wine cost a lot less then? There are some great wines coming from the big names, but they tend to be expensive, and some of the relatively affordable (but still expensive) labels that you see everywhere a really kind of boring if you ask me. They back up tanker trucks of wine to these “wineries” for blending, much like you would do for a cheap bottle of California designated Chardonnay or a $2.99 Charlie whoever.
Then you have this wine. Something that gives you beauty of flavor, a reason to contemplate, and a sense that you are truly treating yourself. I know we don’t have our heads in our glasses as much this time of year, but I smile bigger when this crosses my palate, and I’ll bet your guests won’t set a glass of this down and forget where they put it.
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