Outclassing Its Class
NV Vilmart et Cie "Cuvée Rubis" Rosé
Cult Grower Rosé Champagne, Under $50
"...boldly fragrant but also tightly controlled, with all the components falling impeccably into place... a marvelous contrast of silky refinement and brooding vinosity..."
- Peter Liem, Champagne Guide
The tasting note above just doesn't read anything like a $50 sparkler.
The reason for this is logical enough: This isn't really a $50 sparkler. The absolute lowest pricing you're going to see on this rosé Champagne is close to $10 more expensive than our 6-pack pricing. The bottle fairly sells at most places between $60 and $70.
Word to the wise: Act quickly. Vilmart et Cie is a small house with a big following, a recipe for quick sell-outs and frustrated customers.
For those not yet fully acquainted with Vilmart, with the house style that is at once generous and rich, suave, yet shockingly vivid and clear, the Cuvée Rubis should prove a very worthy introduction. There's a delicacy aligned with intensity to all of Vilmart's Champagnes that feels like it should be an impossible winemaking feat, yet somehow, there it is...
The Cuvée Rubis is a blend of 90% Pinot Noir and 10% Chardonnay from Vilmart's own premier cru plots in Rilly and Villers-Allerand. The high percentage of Pinot lends a distinct meatiness to the wine, with notes of sweet-tart wild berries and just the slightest allusion to animal and earth, splashed over by waves of spiced cream and a polished wire of acidity.
Even in their non-vintage wines, there's both a seriousness and also a fun-ness here, a carefully composed execution of well-tuned pieces that brings wide appeal to Champagne freaks and wine geeks as well as the friend who just really likes delicious bubbly.
Vilmart is unique in that they are, along with Krug and Henri Giraud, one of the Champagne houses that successfully uses oak barrels for fermentation and aging. In less masterful hands, oaked Champagne can come across as unintegrated, its finesse and focus overwhelmed by wood. Here, however, there's a finely-poised balance of depth and creamy richness, hints here and there of baking spices, vanilla and coconut, all intricately woven together with the very pure fruit, the high-toned acidity and Champagne's signature chalky minerality (the house also avoids malolactic fermentation). The terroir is never overwhelmed.
When it comes to culty grower Champagne, Vilmart is one of the few who can ride shotgun to Selosse. Like Selosse, they're a house with a fanatic grower-geek following, but their impressive quality has also won them serious attention from the collectible Champagne scene, from those who drink and passionately seek out the likes of Dom Pérignon and Krug.
Still, Vilmart remains true to their grower roots - a small house with small production and astute vineyard management and winemaking that's garnered huge respect.
Our last offer for Vilmart's 2004 vintage rosé sold out in near-record time (at $115 a bottle), and while today's non-vintage parcel is much more sizeable, when it's gone, so is the extra-sharp pricing.
To place your order, please email us at email@example.com or call the store at (212) 980-9463.
Director, Fine & Rare Wines
Crush Wine & Spirits
Peter Liem, Champagne Guide: Blended from 2006 and 2005, this is as strong a Rubis as I can ever remember, showing a seductive depth of fruit and a confident, elegant poise. It's full of wild cherry and strawberry flavor on the palate, feeling boldly fragrant but also tightly controlled, with all the components falling impeccably into place. There's a marvelous contrast of silky refinement and brooding vinosity, and the finish feels energetic and complete.
Wine is pre-arrival
NET | No further discount