A Langton’s exclusive import, AR Lenoble has been family-owned and operated since it was founded in 1920. Designated ‘mag14’, this Champagne was made with the use of 2014 vintage reserve wines bottled (for freshness) in 1.5-litre magnums.
The Chouilly holding makes AR Lenoble one of a small handful of producers who can use 100% estate-owned Grand Cru Chardonnay in every single one of their wines. British Champagne expert Tim Hall, writing for Jancis Robinson’s website, says the whole Lenoble range is ‘hugely impressive’. He adds: ‘Commentators too often define Chouilly wines as slight, floral and soft but Antoine and Anne Malassagne seem to coax increasing intensity, structure yet featherlight texture and airy weight, with high levels of reserve wines, dosages all below extra brut and judicious oak’.
100% Chardonnay 5g/l Dosage
The NV Brut Intense "mag 14" is a blend of Chardonnay (Chouilly Grand Cru), Pinot Noir (Bisseuil 1er Cru) and Pinot Meunier (Damery) and combines the 2014 vintage with 40%reserve wines, most of which had been aged in magnums under natural cork. With 25% aged in oak, the wine shows a clear, intense citrus color and opens with a clean, very aromatic yet fine and fresh bouquet of lychee and floral notes. Delicate and fresh on the palate, with nice fruit (red berries) and good grip in the finish, this is a pure and tight yet pretty persistent blend that goes well as an aperitif and with lighter courses, even seafood and raw fish. The finish is clean, straight, fresh and salty. Tasted April 2018.
89 points, Wine Advocate (September 2018)
Fresh, lively and bright citrus fruit with a lime and lemon edge. There’s a smooth, pastry-like, savory thread, as well as a cashew-nut note. The palate has a super fresh and easygoing array of white peaches and citrus. Based on the 2014 vintage.
91 points, JamesSuckling.com (July 2018)
25% Chardonnay from Chouilly, 30% Pinot Noir from Bisseuil, 45% Meunier from Damery. Base 2014; 40% reserve wines, including a fraction of 2010 reserves aged in magnum under cork for four years to 2014 – hence ‘mag 14’. Three years on lees. Release 2018. 25% oak fermented. Dosage 5 g/l.
They are including more reserve wines to add freshness, they say. Quite open and lacy in texture but with great depth. Very satisfying and unignorable. This is the wine that Lenoble have very kindly donated as the aperitif for the Room to Read London wine gala 2018. Powerful.
17 points, JancisRobinson.com (June 2018)
Pale straw. Unusually broad spread of wild flower aromas – sort of biodynamic-like. This has really rounded out to a charming, beautifully balanced wine. Quite broad and approachable now with an even more dramatic peacock's tail finish with a little bit of richness. Really very smart.
17.5 points, JancisRobinson.com (April 2019)
Located 150 km east of Paris, Champagne is the French wine region renowned for producing the finest, most rich and complex sparkling wines in the world. The elegance, longevity and racy acidity of these wines are attributed to the influence of the chalky soils of the region and the cool, marginal continental climate. The region spans an area of 35,000 ha and has 4 main growing areas, each favouring one of the three noble Champagne varieties; Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier. Champagne has a vineyard quality hierarchy based on the soils, aspect and overall quality of the grapes. Like Burgundy, these quality designations are allocated to the vineyards of the village. Of the 319 villages of Champagne, 17 have Grand Cru status and 44 villages are designated Premier Cru. All Champagne is produced by Traditional Method. The vast majority of Champagne is a blend of the three varieties and may also be a blend of several vintages producing the popular Non Vintage (NV) house styles. Top quality blends from exceptional years are sold as Vintage (Millésime) Champagne.