FEATURED CHAMPAGNE HOUSE
The Boizel family’s love for Champagne and passionate pursuit of finesse, character and elegance in their wines are authentic family values that have stood the test of time.
Embraced by the family and passed on from one generation to the next, each member of the family is proudly part of their story, taking turns as the holder of the family traditions. These traditions have been passed on from father to son or daughter since 1834, and beyond the recipes, blending secrets and customs, each generation strives to enrich the long held family traditions and also passes on the Boizel spirit.
Strong Family Tradition, Secrets, Customs and Curious Minds
There are key components essential in the production of champagne are rigor, meticulous attention to detail, perseverance and passion for Champagne which also requires an open, curious, inventive mind – one that is always seeking improvement. It is their belief that where wine and nature is concerned, her gifts demand respect. Only by letting nature rule and not desiring to impose a taste but simply seek to enhance what nature provides, allows the secrets of the wine’s natural qualities to shine through.
Each generation has progressed with the times, trying out new practices in viticulture and oenology, selecting only those that will enable the best grapes so the best wines can be obtained, and the reward is the bottled finest expression of their natural character and the joys of the ever evolving pursuit of excellence.
Excellence Means No Compromises
Their search for excellence means that no compromises are acceptable during any of the stages in the wine’s production and that which protects and enhances the flavors is always the most natural of solutions. It is the Boizel’s preference that nature, rules. The wines retain all of their extremely delicate aromatic potential. A small selection of the musts of some outstanding wines is vinified in barrels, in order to refine their character.
Led by the Seasons and Time Honored Traditions
Each season heralds a new stage in the wine making process.
During autumn and winter they prepare the widest possible range of carefully selected wines for the big blending tastings in the spring. In November, the Boizel family chose to allow malolactic fermentation to take place; this is a natural progression in which the malic acid, one of numerous acids present in the wine, is converted to lactic acid. The result is that the wines then posess a more rounded texture and will develop biscuity, brioche notes during the maturing period.
Winter marks the beginning of tastings involving all the members of the Boizel family accompanied by the oenologist. During this process, their intuition and skill converge, where everyone deepens and memorizes their tasting judgements regarding the potential of each vin clair (still wine) of which they are following the evolution. It is during this stage, the wines show a formidable -and indispensable- acidity; the flavours are subtle, floral and fruity, as is typical of very young wines. Certain wines from the previous two harvests, kept in low-temperature vats, are used to enrich the blends of the non-vintage Champagnes.
The spring is when the final choices and the proportions of each blend are determined. It is during this period that the challenge of finding the right balance to enable the best possible expression of the qualities of each wine occurs. While there are no fixed criteria, or concepts that could be encapsulated in some kind of formula; it is not simply a matter of following the same recipe year after year.
It is for this reason that the taste and the harmony of their Champagnes are inscribed in their memories, perhaps even in their genes. Honoring the wines with modesty, authenticity, and in trusting their intuition and skill, and ever guided by a passion for the great wines of Champagne.
The Price of Excellent Champagne is Time
Time is a decisive factor in the quality of the Champagnes. Time comes into play from the moment the grapes are selected and vinified. The still wines produced from the best grapes, in particular the Grands and Premiers Crus, require a lot of time to open up. (The cuvées will have a better capacity to age). The temperature is kept low in the vats so that alcoholic fermentation takes place very slowly allowing the freshness and the delicacy of the flavours to be protected.
Time plays a factor again in each stage – the necessary time for natural evolution, giving each wine the appropriate number of years in the cellar essential to reach its full potential, and meticulously selecting release dates of wines onto the market, are a rare luxury and a strongly held family tradition to which the Boizels are the most deeply committed and benefits from their expertise.
During the prise de mousse (secondary fermentation): after the tirage (bottling) following the required blend proportions and the addition of yeasts and sugar, the bottles are taken down into the cellars where a cool year-round temperature of 10°C ensures a very slow secondary fermentation in the bottle, which extends over six to eight weeks results in a very fine mousse and the total preservation of the wines’ flavours.
Their maturation stage in their cellars is long. In their experience, the wines age better on the lees and so this is how they are stored, horizontally, both in quiet and darkness. Essential is this period for it is during this time that the wines gain the finesse, character and elegance that make great Champagnes. While the rules for the Appellation require fifteen months but Boizel, upholding their traditions, the wines are kept for at least three to four years in the cellar before being released to the market.
Where specific blends for vintages are concerned, they require even more time as their flavours do not become truly refined or reach their full potential until five to ten years has passed, sometimes even longer. The Boizel family tradition is to always make sure they wait for the exact moment when Champagnes cuvées begin to reveal their complexity, their generosity and the wonderful smoothness that is greatly appreciated by connoisseurs.
Time is indeed the price for excellence.
Their “Treasury” of Wines Throughout History Was Ahead of Its Time
An incredible gem lies hidden at the far end of their cellars – a vault named “Treasury” – a place that has transcended time, a place where each generation has set aside the best bottles and especially managed to protect this treasure to the vagaries of history.
Each has carried on the preservation of these fragile witnesses of the excellence of their work, each drop of precious liquid archives resting in the deepest caves, starting from the beginning with the first bottles of the young House in 1834. This was a very rare choice in the 19th century since there was at that time no interest or market for older vintages and especially as the beginnings of the art of Champagne then did not allow to predict a favorable evolution beyond ten years in the cellar.
Today the family gathers to taste them only on rare occasion in order to continue the visionary work of previous generations and preserve this unique treasury.
These wines are stored “sur pointe” which means upside down, before disgorging which prevents any further contact with oxygen from the bottling which encourages a slower maturation. Plugged with cork stoppers but unfortunately some, still held in place by a clip, don’t age well and let the wine spoil but most often, though reduced to a very hard rod, their purpose of preservation was served, and after a very delicate opening, unveils remarkable wines.
How does a champagne improve over such a long period of time? Its is not exactly known. The evolution over several decades is secret and unique to each vintage, and even each bottle: flavors become stronger, characters are affirmed, enriched by an infinite complexity and subtle variations. Only Champagnes with a solid and harmonious structure develop these qualities over the long term and they are often extraordinary and sometimes simply fabulous.
FEATURED CHAMPAGNES OF BOIZEL
Select Wines in the Boizel Essential Collection
30% Chardonnay | 55% Pinot noir | 15 % Pinot meunier, Ageing 3 years on lees, Dosage: 8 gr/l, 30% of reserve wines
Tasting notes: The robe is brilliant straw gold. The effervescence shows great finesse with tiny bubbles in swirling columns. The expressive, fine and fresh nose opens on white flowers aromas (hawthorn) followed by an elegant fruity ambiance with notes of white peach, apricot, hints of citrus fruits and brioche. Its texture is seductive, fresh and round, well balanced. The first aromas are magnified, joined by intense notes of pear compote and acacia honey. The final is rich with lovely persistence.
A wonderful, pleasant apéritif, but just as well deliciously accompagning a meal – particularly seafood and grilled fish.
90/100 “The satiny bead carries vibrant flavors of apricot, biscotti, slivered almond, honey and lemon zest in this expressive version, while firm acidity drives through to the chalky finish.” Wine Spectator 2014
20% Chardonnay | 50 % Pinot noir of which 8% vinified in red | 30% Pinot meunier, Ageing 3 years on lees, Dosage: 8 gr/l, 20% of reserve wines
Tasting notes: The very fine and aerial bubbles brighten its pale pink robe with some copper bronze hints. The fine and subtle bouquet reveals fruity and delicate notes of rasberries and wild strawberries. On the palate, it is velvety and deliciously fresh, as well as generous and well-structured. The refined fruity aromas are intense and blend harmoniously with citrus notes, smooth spices and an elegant subtle minerality. The final is fresh and smooth.
Excellent summer apéritif but just as amazing with food, such as cold meat and lamb. Delightfully harmonious with red fruit deserts.
89/100 “Its acidity remains crisp, its dosage well integrated and its secondary complexity will appeal to some.” Tyson Stelzer, The Champagne Guide 2015.
Select Wines in the Boizel Exceptional Collection
CUVEÉ SOUS BOIS
40% Chardonnay | 50% Pinot noir | 10% Pinot meunier, Ageing 10 to 12 years on lees, Dosage: 5 gr/l
Tasting notes: The robe is shiny, deep gold, crossed by thin columns of persistent tiny bubbles. In the bouquet, the initially light wooden notes are soon over-taken by intense aromas of white flowers, baked fruits, roasted almonds with spicy notes (cinnamon, vanilla) all on a background of surprising freshness. In the mouth, the wine is superb, complex with striking structure and an airy balance between freshness and power. The rich aromatic palette is confirmed with notes of small red berries and dried apricots. The final is elegant and exceptionally longlasting.
This great Champagne requies a few minutes in the glass to develop its full expression. A Champagne for gastronomy.
**** “With a smoky and concentrated bouquet, it is fruity and emerges smoky note against a background of vanilla nuances. The mouth is full and meaty expanding great harmony and length.” Gerhard Eichelmann, Le Guide Larousse du Champagne 2013
BLANC DE NOIRS
100% Pinot noir, Ageing 3 years on lees, Dosage: 8 gr/l, 30% of reserve wines
Tasting notes: The intense golden robe, the amber sparkles and the tiny, lively and delicate bubbles are enhanced by the brilliance. The bouquet fascinates by huge aromatic richness with intense and warm aromas of ripe fruits (pears, small red berries, apricots) and fresh toasted brioche. On the palate, the freshness and ampleness are astonishing with a silky and refined texture. It reveals a subtle harmony between fruity, pastry and honeyed notes. The final is seductive, fruity and fresh.
A perfect apéritif, but just as sublime accompanying french cuisine, grilled chicken with wild mushrooms, veal chop with morels or with a delicious festive picnic.
90/100 “Juicy and expansive, offering a suave blend of richness and vivacity and finishing with good power and length.” Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar 2014
Select Wine in the Boizel Jewels Collection
JOYAU DE FRANCE ROSÉ 2004
36% Chardonnay | 64 % Pinot noir including 10 % vinified as red wine, Ageing 8 to 10 years on lees, Dosage: 5 gr/l.
Tasting notes: The robe is very bright, light pink with copper reflections, underlined by fine and lively bubbles. The bouquet is elegant, at first discreet, slowly opening with delicate notes of fresh wild strawberries and blackcurrant, evolving towards more intense honeyed aromas of acacia flowers with hints of rhubarb and sweet spices (cinnamon). On the palate this wine surprises with a subtle balance between complexity and freshness. Its structure is ample with soft tannins and a beautiful silky texture. It then reveals flavors of morello cherries, cassis and fresh almonds. The slightly minty final strengthens the aerial impression.
The structure and complexity of this elegant and subtle Champagne are the signs of a great aging potential sought by lovers of vintage Rosé.
90/100 Medium deep pink with some development, creamy notes of yeat, brioche, sweet citrus, spices and pear. The palate is rather bone dry with a full structure, nicely integrated mousse and a long fresh finish. Andreas Larsson Tasted Journal 2013
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