Since 1889 the Laherte family have been growing grapes in and around the picturesque village of Chavot (just above the Cote des Blancs) and today own 10 hectares of vines across 72 dispersed parcels (Coteaux d’Epernay, Marne Valley and Cote des Blancs). To the Laherte family the notion of terroir is much more important than blending. Many parcels are cultivated bio-dynamically and vinified in oak casks, which allows the individual character of these micro-terroirs to really shine through in the final wines. Soils in the Laherte vineyards range from chalk to silt, clay and marl – and this soil diversity, combined with best practise viticulture and skilful winemaking has created an intriguing range of authentic champagnes at very reasonable prices. These days the estate is run by two brothers Thierry and Christian Laherte, assisted by Thierry’s son Aurélien, representing the seventh generation of the family to grow vines in this area.
(60% pinot meunier, 30% chardonnay, 10% pinot noir)
This is an exciting entry level grower champagne with a twist, made from a subtle blend of the estate’s different terroirs, with 40% reserve wines (aged in cask) and only 6% dosage. Surprisingly delicate for a champagne that contains 60% pinot meunier, Brut Tradition is lightly textured wine, rich in the mouth without being heavy – crisp and fruity with aromas of green apples and pears and refreshing hints of lemon zest, followed by a nice yeasty character. A very approachable and great value fruity & minerally champagne suitable for enjoyment on its own as an aperitif or with grilled fish entrees.
Laherte Blanc de Blancs “La Pierre de la Justice” NV
(100% 1er cru chardonnay from Voipreux, Cote Des Blancs)
A big step up from the standard NV, this is a well-bred racy little blanc de blancs number made from old vines from a family plot near Vertus (at the bottom of the Cote des Blancs). Absolutely delicious fresh and creamy nose with hints of toasted almonds, lavender and mint followed by a long-lasting, well-defined mineral and full-bodied palate. Magnificent quality/value proposition to suit any fish entree.
(50% pinot meunier, 30% pinot noir, 10% chardonnay + 10% still red wine)
As a lover of fine rose champagnes, I can safely vouch this one is a real gem worth seeking out!! Made from old vines (with 40% reserve wine added) this vibrant pink medium bodied champagne shows strawberrries, cherries and watermelon on the nose followed by firm acidity and minerality on the palate. Its luscious long lasting fruit flavours make this rose champagne suitable for both seafood and chicken dishes – it can even match fruity and creamy desserts like pavlova. A real show-stopper!