Champagne in Living Color – Wine & Spirits Magazine

Champagne in Living Color


Delphine Vesselle credits this wine to her father, Jean Vesselle, who decided to resuscitate the style. “In Bouzy,” she says, “the pinot noir gets very ripe and [more than a century ago], when we were bringing the grapes back to the cellar with horses, by the time it got to the house, the juice had a little color to it.”

Delphine Vesselle, photo by Mika Boudot

In modern Champagne, that color is usually filtered out, so the wine is clear, but her father decided to leave it, which she continues to do, to preserve what she describes as the soul of pinot noir.

Everyone on our panel was struck by this wine’s beauty, as its delicate touch seemed to connect with every scent and taste receptor at once. Auction-consultant Craig Ganzer commented on that complexity: “I just kept taking notes,” he said. The pink color and the range of green herbs in the scent seem to resonate through the wine, taking its radish-like tension and formal structure in an understated direction. You could say it’s like drinking history, but it’s too fresh for that.

Imported by North Berkeley Imports, Berkeley, CA

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Jean Vesselle Oeil de Perdrix Brut

Every week, our editors highlight a wine that intrigued them in our blind panel tastings, expanding on their tasting note in this space. These are entirely editorial choices; there are no paid placements. Subscribers can also access the original tasting note by searching here.

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This story appears in the print issue of jan 2019.
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