(disg July 2020)
The first new cuvée from this Domaine for some twenty years, Les Prémices hails from 3.5 hectares of vines in Trigny (northwest of Reims) in the Massif de Saint Thierry area. To give you your ‘Great Grower bearings’, Trigny is situated just to the west of Saint Thierry and Merfy, where Alexandre Chartogne is based, and east of Montigny sur Vesle, where Aurélien Suenen grows the fruit for his stunning La Grande Vigne cuvee. The Egly vines span seven historic lieux-dits (or named sites) in the commune. Like the Domaine’s Vrigny vines, these have come to the Domaine via Annick Egly’s (Francis’s wife) side of the family. The return of the two Egly children, Charles and Clémence, to the Domaine has given Francis Egly the ability to begin producing from these plots, and this is the inaugural release.
Reflecting what is planted in the vineyards, Les Prémices is an equal blend of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier drawn from mature vines (on average, 40 years old) rooted in clay, sand and sandstone, over chalk bedrock—a soil typical of the Massif de St. Thierry. While this first release is drawn from a single vintage, next year’s 2017 base will include 60% reserve wine. As always, the classic Egly manifesto applies here: old vines and low yields; hand-harvesting of fully ripe fruit; no inoculation; long lees aging; no fining or filtration and low dosage etc... One difference here is that the wine was fermented and aged exclusively in tank. The wine spent 36 months on lees and was disgorged with two grams per litre in July 2020.
As we have only tasted some of the base wines for this cuvée (we were due to taste from bottle on our visit this year, and the wines are yet to land), we’ll let Mr Galloni describe the wine. As soon as the wine arrives you will have our thoughts!
“A new wine in the Egly range, the NV Brut Les Prémices is a Chardonnay/Pinot Noir/Meunier blend from Trigny, all 2016 vintage. Bright floral notes and the natural richness of Pinots come together nicely in this entry-level bottling. There is good energy, but naturally not quite the textural breadth of the top wines.” 90 points, Antonio Galloni, Vinous