Pascal Bardoux is a quiet, pensive winemaker. In Champagne, land of glitzy tasting rooms and glossy brochures, his humble demeanor and unassuming style distinguish him. Our tastings together are long and measured — each wine has time to develop in the glass, and a discussion follows with precise references to rare fruits and other scents.
And Bardoux’s wines reward contemplation — they’re exceptionally complex and fine. The subtleties of Champagne can fall victim to its glamor and festive uses, but given time and attention, these wines can be as elegant as the finest of Burgundy and Bordeaux.
Bardoux lost 45% of his 2010 crop to weather, but the quality of what remained (a mere 300 cases) was exceptional. We weren’t allocated much of the 2010 vintage, and we don’t have too much left in the cellar — but what we have is drinking better than ever.
Bardoux’s 2010 Champagne Millesimé is his first 100% blanc de blancs. It’s all chardonnay, and comes with an impressive collection of accolades. The Guide Hachette awarded a Coup de Coeur, finding it “rich, silky, and fresh.” It also won gold at the prestigious Effervescents du Monde competition, where it placed 8th in a field of 548 sparkling wines.
More than any other Bardoux wine, this cuvée distinguishes Champagne as head and shoulders above other sparkling wine. The nose shows anise, pomegranate and cream, with a subtle toastiness that’s both charming and serious. The mouth is smooth and long, with very fine bubbles, and notes of quince, grape skins, peach and plums.
Champagne this fine doesn’t require a celebration. But should you need one, open this at your Easter Sunday afternoon meal in a few weeks — your ham, potatoes, eggs and asparagus will thank you.
Bardoux Champagne Millesimé 2010
Ansonia Retail: $84
2+ bottle price : $75/bot
FREE EAST COAST SHIPPING ON ANY 12 BOTTLES