Back Up The Truck - 2008 Gatinois Brut Grand Cru

Posted by Joe Salamone

Back Up the Truck - Vintage Champagne
2008 Gatinois Brut Grand Cru
Watershed Vintage Value

We've been searching long and hard for a 2008 Champagne that we could offer at $60 and that would over-deliver in a big way.

We finally found it in Gatinois.

2008 is a vintage in Champagne that we love. It will go down with '96 and '02 as one of the best vintages of the past two decades.

While '96 and '02 were ripe, powerful vintages, '08 delivers a sleek energy and balance. The easy comparison is with '88, one of our favorite Champagne vintages and one that has aged beautifully.

Gatinois '08 dramatizes everything that we love about the vintage. Gatinois has long been one of our go-to's for value Champagne, but their '08 is the best that we've encountered from them after almost a decade of tasting the wines.

The heart of Gatinois is an exceptional terroir. They are based in Aÿ, which is indisputably one of the great Grand Cru villages of Champagne. This is Pinot country and the wines of Aÿ boast plenty of red fruited muscle, but above all Aÿ stands out for its class and breeding.

Gatinois' style is old-fashioned in the most admirable of ways: they let Aÿ and Pinot speak with all of their resonant depth and pedigree. The style feels classic: there are dark, explosive, saturating red fruits married to an impeccably focused and fine chalky minerality.

In '08, the inherent power of Aÿ is complemented by the acid drive and harmony of the vintage. The combination is shocking.

When we find a vintage like 2008 and a well-priced success like Gatinois, Champagne offers some of the most impressive value around for cellaring. Champagnes transform into something deeply beautiful with age and Gatinois' reputation for aging is impressive. We've heard stories about killer bottles at 20+ years old. We expect the '08 to improve over the next couple of decades.

Gatinois is a small estate and their vintage-dated Champagnes are produced in very small quantities (somewhere around 400 cases.) In a vintage like 2008, the modest quantities will disappear quickly. We strongly advise that you stock up now.

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

Joe Salamone
Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits