South of the Champagne region in the heart of the Côte des Bar, you will discover this magnificent Champagne. Gorgeous, clean, and crisp, Philippe Prié Brut Tradition is laced with bright white peaches, green apples, flowers, and minerals. Medium in body, it reveals plenty of length and focus, with a crisp and incredibly pure finish, due to the very late inducing of the liquor. Elaborated from 80% Pinot Noir (for robust structure) and 20% Chardonnay (for delicacy and elegance), the grapes come from 30-year-old vines in clay and limestone soils, located in 23 hectares in the Côte des Bar region of southern Champagne.
The Côte des Bar marks the transition between the plains of Champagne and the rolling slopes of Burgundy. From the Côte des Blancs, it is some two hours south of Epernay. The largest city near the Côte des Bar and the Aube department is Troyes, once abundant with textile factories, but now perhaps most known for its high-quality andouillette - an aromatic sausage made from pig's intestines. Just south of the Côte des Bar, one finds the small village of Chaource, from which the creamy, buttery, and delicious cow's milk cheese takes its name. Less than an hour southwest lies the northern tip of Burgundy and the town of Chablis.
The soil in the Côte des Bar is closer to that of Chablis - Kimmeridgian marl topped by Portlandian limestone - than it is to the vineyards near Epernay and Reims, which is composed mostly of Cretaceous chalk. Unlike in Chablis, however, producers in the Aube specialize in Pinot Noir. Humid Atlantic influences coming from the west and continental influences with higher temperatures are two factors that help Pinot Noir ripen extremely well in the area. Pinot accounts for almost 90% of vines planted in the region and strongly influences the character of its Champagnes. The Côte des Bar has diverse terroirs. Specific soil types, local climate conditions, slope, and orientation are extremely varied, producing separate micro-climates. Each vigneron needs to be fully attentive to his own terroir in order to make the most of it.
Non-vintage Champagnes consist of a base year in the blend, which represents the majority of the Cuvee. To that base, reserve wines from previous vintages are added to develop the house style. In the case of Philippe Prié, the tradition label is based on Pinot Noir and the base year comprises 70 percent of the total blend. The additional 30 percent comes from reserves, generally from three to five different vintages. In 2005, a new winery came into service, equipped with a state of the art wine press with a capacity of nine tons, and a full range of temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks adapted to each parcel of the vineyards. This modern production facility offers complete control over the quality winemaking process. The secret of the consistent quality of Philippe Prié wines lies in careful blending techniques.
An immediately drinkable wine, this is crisp and bright with green fruits, apples and final acidity. It has a light mousse and a good lift at the end. Drink now.