Ayse of Spades: 2010 Belluard Ayse Mont Blanc Brut Zero

Posted by Joe Salamone

Ayse of Spades
2010 Belluard Ayse
Mont Blanc Brut Zero
The Best Sparkling Wine
Outside Champagne?

Along with Huet's Petillant, Belluard's Mont Blanc is our go-to sparkler outside of Champagne.

The Champagne comparison is somewhat silly. Mont Blanc is very much its own thing. With that said, sparkling wine can be a minefield and the comparison quickly establishes the high level at which Mont Blanc functions.

We've been very excited about Belluard's wines for some time. Across the entire Crush staff, we're continually impressed by his wines. Vintage after vintage, Mont Blanc is one of our favorites.

via @crushwineco

2010 was a break-out vintage for Belluard. If there was any doubt that Belluard deserved a place on the world stage, '10 made it clear. Shortly after the release of the '10s, Belluard received a glowing review by the Wine Advocate's David Schildknecht, who wrote: the wines offer "some of the most remarkable not to mention improbable vinous excitement and promise I have witnessed anywhere in France during the past decade."

This is a wine that I buy at least a few bottles of every vintage for the cellar for the complexity and fascination. The value is just a bonus. It's for this reason that we created special 4-pack pricing. The 2008 is just starting to deepen and get really complex. It's easy to see it improving for another 3-5 years.

Belluard is based in the town of Ayse in the Savoie region. Even for Savoie, Ayse is an obscure corner pushed way over to the eastern edge of France, bordering on Switzerland. The local white grape is the rare and esoteric Gringet grape. In the 19th century, Ayse was famous for the quality of its sparkling wines. Only sparkling wine can be labeled Ayse AOC and tasting Mont Blanc, it really does seem that this area and Gringet is capable of producing really impressive sparkling wine.

Mont Blanc doesn't receive any dosage and it feels spot on - the wine shows a depth of complexity, vibrancy and a length that's lovely. The 2010 edition boasts an especially clear stony minerality with a beautiful combination of flowers, gentle spice and yellow fruits that really build on the finish.

Belluard's wines are something that I'm very excited to sell every year. I wish there was more, but with wines this compelling you take what you can get.

To order, reply to offers@crushwineco.com or call the store at (212) 980-9463.

Joe Salamone
Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits