There is perhaps no other type of wine that carries the reputation of Champagne. Despite the enormous inroads made by the like of Prosecco in recent years, which has resulted in the Italian sparkling white wine becoming even more popular than its French counterpart, Champagne still maintains a level of prestige that places it in the upper echelons of the wine industry, making it a must for celebrations and those who just want to treat themselves to some of the best the industry has to offer.
Of course, with such high demand and such a stellar reputation, it should come as no surprise that only the best Champagne producers are able to really make a name for themselves. After all, the region as a whole does not look kindly on those who would attempt to make quick money from the famous name and those who commit themselves to making Champagne do so with the knowledge that they must achieve exceptionally high standards and essentially devote their lives to the wine if they are to find success.
The company that we are going to highlight this week has done exactly that and so much more. Now one of the leading Champagne producers in the world, it stands as an example of what can be achieved with hard work and dedication to your craft. We are, of course, talking about Aubry and this is the company’s story.
Located in the heart of the Petite Montagne de Reims in an area named Jouy-lès-Reims, Aubry was established by a pair of brothers, named Philippe and Pierre Aubry, who decided to take generations worth of wine growing knowledge and apply it to a business venture quite unlike any that their family had attempted before. With knowledge stretching back as far as 1790, the duo decided to focus on growing some of the lost grape varieties of the Champagne region, allowing them to create wines that were not only indicative of that famous region, but were also capable of standing apart from the many competitors they faced.
Combining the knowledge of Pierre, who studied as an oenologist at the famed Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Agronomie in Montpellier, France, with the biology studies of Philippe, the duo drew upon their family’s history in the winegrowing industry and made a bet on themselves that they would be able to combine the classic and revered nature of Champagne with the original ideas they had formulated, thus creating a company that could hold its own in such a competitive landscape.
In short, they succeeded perhaps beyond even their own expectations. Beyond creating the expressive and rare cuvées that would provide them with the acclaim their work so richly deserved the brothers were also able to create remarkable Champagnes that were palatable to the amateur wine enthusiast, thus striking upon a business model that allowed them to reach the largest possible audience while also gaining the prestige that is so often important to Champagne producers. This varied collection is a true reflection of the indomitable spirit of the company, combining the respect for tradition that inspired them into the industry in the first place with the originality and inventiveness that has allowed them to make their own indelible marks on the Champagne industry.
The word “rigor” stands at the heart of everything that the company does and refer directly to the dedication it places into ensuring the high quality of its grapes. The company is rigorous in selecting the best tools and cultivating its lands, while maintaining the respect required to properly implement the traditional methods while simultaneously opposing any efforts to create a conformity around Champagne. The company believes that if the end product is good enough, there is no need for all producers to make exactly the same wines to gain a reputation. Through the brothers’ dedication to research and understanding the history of grapes in the Champagne region, there can be no questions about their commitment to creating great wines that ooze quality.
Today, the company maintains 15 hectares of land that it divides into 60 parcels, allowing it to grow both the grapes that have played such an instrumental role in the development of Champagne over the years and the forgotten grapes that have helped the company set itself apart from its peers and offer something different in a typically traditional area of the wine industry. All told, this tactic allows the brothers to offer up the distinct Aubry style that so many have fallen in love with, allowing it to continue providing Champagnes of all varieties to the masses
So, we think it’s about time that we stopped talking about all of the varieties of Champagne that Aubry is noted for and instead focus on a selection that we believe represents some of the best that the company has to offer.
Choosing an Aubry Champagne presented us with a tough decision. Do we go for one of the examples of the company’s creativity and highlight a Champagne that does things a little differently or do we show you just how well the company stacks up when compared to the traditional Champagne producers.
We chose the latter option and bring to you the Aubry Champagne Brut, which is made using the traditional Champagne grapes of Chardonnay, Meunier, and Pinot Noir, though it still reflects the innovativeness of Aubry by virtue of each of those grapes coming from three different cultures.
The golden colour that is so typical of Champagne is certainly present here, with pouring revealing a stunningly fruity bouquet that offers dominant notes of raspberry and peach.
In the mouth, the wine truly comes into its own. It is here that the Meunier gapes really come to the fore, offering the wine a truly spectacular structure that maintains its tone and firmness throughout. The persistence of the wine tempts the drinker into one more sip and just goes to show that even when going the traditional route, Aubry is able to infuse its wines with a rare sort of personality.