H. Billiot Fils Brut Reserve Front Label
H. Billiot Fils Brut Reserve Front LabelH. Billiot Fils Brut Reserve Front Bottle Shot

H. Billiot Fils Brut Reserve

  • WS92
  • W&S90
750ML / 12.5% ABV
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750ML / 12.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The solidity, length and complexity are incomparable, and the wine soars above its category.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 92
Wine Spectator
An elegant Champagne, featuring a firm, acidic frame, finely meshed with a detailed mousse and flavors of ripe apple, toasted raisin bread, fleur de sel, peach skin and star anise. Offers a lingering, chalk-tinged finish.
W&S 90
Wine & Spirits
The youthful character of this wine reads as aggressive chalkiness when first poured; it broadens and sweetens with air to apple butter and meringue flavors over a polished scent of chalk. Buffed white, for a crown roast of pork. no bottler info
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H. Billiot Fils

Champagne H. Billiot Fils

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Champagne H. Billiot Fils, France
Ambonnay is Pinot land; 350 hectares and only 20 of them Chardonnay. Ambonnay Pinot Noir seems to be the sweetest, most Volnay-like in the Montagne de Reims. Bouzy, in contrast, is darker but more earthy, while Aÿ is firmer with less overt berried fruit. The Ambonnay signature might be strawberry, forest-floor, sweet-100s. All of which are certainly present in Billiot’s wines.

Billiot’s five hectares of vines are all in Ambonnay, spread over 18 parcels. Even more impressive is that all but one of their parcels are on the mid-slope, in the most favored portion of the vineyard area, expressing the classical character of this famous village. "The wines of Ambonnay are very vinous, with a lot of strength," says Serge’s daughter, Laetitia "but they are also very fine, with delicacy and finesse. They stay fresh for a long time." All of the wines are fermented in enameled steel tanks, which Billiot prefers to stainless steel, and the wines are neither fined nor filtered. In addition, they do not go through malolactic: "We have 100-percent grand cru vines, which always give a high degree of maturity,” says Serge Billiot, “so we don’t need the malo."

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Associated with luxury, celebration, and romance, the region, Champagne, is home to the world’s most prized sparkling wine. In order to bear the label, ‘Champagne’, a sparkling wine must originate from this northeastern region of France—called Champagne—and adhere to strict quality standards. Made up of the three towns Reims, Épernay, and Aÿ, it was here that the traditional method of sparkling wine production was both invented and perfected, birthing a winemaking technique as well as a flavor profile that is now emulated worldwide.

Well-drained, limestone and chalky soil defines much of the region, which lend a mineral component to its wines. Champagne’s cold, continental climate promotes ample acidity in its grapes but weather differences from year to year can create significant variation between vintages. While vintage Champagnes are produced in exceptional years, non-vintage cuvées are produced annually from a blend of several years in order to produce Champagnes that maintain a consistent house style.

With nearly negligible exceptions, . These can be blended together or bottled as individual varietal Champagnes, depending on the final style of wine desired. Chardonnay, the only white variety, contributes freshness, elegance, lively acidity and notes of citrus, orchard fruit and white flowers. Pinot Noir and its relative Pinot Meunier, provide the backbone to many blends, adding structure, body and supple red fruit flavors. Wines with a large proportion of Pinot Meunier will be ready to drink earlier, while Pinot Noir contributes to longevity. Whether it is white or rosé, most Champagne is made from a blend of red and white grapes—and uniquely, rosé is often produce by blending together red and white wine. A Champagne made exclusively from Chardonnay will be labeled as ‘blanc de blancs,’ while ones comprised of only red grapes are called ‘blanc de noirs.’

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A term typically reserved for Champagne and Sparkling Wines, non-vintage or simply “NV” on a label indicates a blend of finished wines from different vintages (years of harvest). To make non-vintage Champagne, typically the current year’s harvest (in other words, the current vintage) forms the base of the blend. Finished wines from previous years, called “vins de reserve” are blended in at approximately 10-50% of the total volume in order to achieve the flavor, complexity, body and acidity for the desired house style. A tiny proportion of Champagnes are made from a single vintage.

There are also some very large production still wines that may not claim one particular vintage. This would be at the discretion of the winemaker’s goals for character of the final wine.

SKRKBA1_0 Item# 147551

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