Benoit Marguet is one of the vanguard in Champagne, pushing for quality in the vineyard and winery no matter how difficult the process.
Starting with the 2008 harvest, he began setting aside and bottling separately the wine from his best vineyard plots. The 2008 Marguet Pere et Fils “Les Crayeres” Ambonnay Brut Champagne ($69.99) is the first of these wines to be released, and it is a stunner. This Champagne is composed of 70% Chardonnay and 30% Pinot Noir from old, massal selected vines in the mid-slope vineyard site Les Crayeres in Ambonnay. As the name suggests, this is an extremely chalky site, and happens to be one of the very best in this grand cru village.
Egly-Ouriet also owns vines in this vineyard, and also bottles a single vineyard expression. Benoit fermented this wine exclusively in old barrique, with very little sulfur. The 2008 vintage was a great one in Champagne, with ripeness and acid that hasn’t been seen since 1996. This wine reflects that concentration of both acidity and ripeness, and the wine shows tight and electric right now, but promises to age with the greatest of Champagnes.