Herve Rafflin Champagne La Nature’l Premier Cru Extra Brut: Top-of-the-class and drastically under-priced!

Be among the first in the U.S.A. to experience the beautiful NV Hervé Rafflin “La Nature’l” Premier Cru Extra Brut Champagne. This is a rare Champagne. It is among the best finds ever from Arrowine’s Doug Rosen. And remember, Doug and Arrowine introduced the U.S.A. to Champagne houses like Cedric Bouchard (Roses de Jeanne), Bereche, Jerome Prevost and more. Yes, today’s find, Rafflin, belongs in this distinguished company. And it belongs high on the list! Not only is this an elegant rarity, this Premier Cru Extra Brut is an amazing Champagne value, too.

Champagne fans need to experience the wines of Hervé Rafflin. All of Rafflin’s Champagnes are special wines. They’re made by hand in tiny quantities and are as expressive as Champagne can be. This wine, the  “La Nature’l” Premier Cru Extra Brut was Doug’s pick of the year from this house. It’s as pure, evocative and transparent as Champagne gets. Stunningly, you can get it for as little as $42.99. That’s less than many mass-produced grocery-store brands sell for! It’s twice the wine! You can only get this rising Champagne star at Arrowine!Herve Rafflin Champagne

NV Hervé Rafflin Champagne “La Nature’l” Premier Cru Extra Brut  (Champagne, France)
Reg. $59.99
E-mail Sale! 1-5 bottles: $47.99 per bottle
6-11 bottles: $44.99
Case (12+ bottles): $39.99

  • To order please call Arrowine.  We’re at 703-525-0990 (Arlington, VA) or 202-785-0785 (Washington, DC).
  • Please call the location where you would like to pick up your order. 
  • The Champagne arrives tomorrow, Wednesday November 22nd, 2017.
  • Sale prices are good for one week if supplies last (but this small production exclusive Champagne will likely sell out sooner).

Don’t wait. Rafflin made under 700 cases of this great Champagne. We’re getting all we can. We secured about 3% of world-wide production for Arrowine’s e-mail customers. But it won’t be enough.

Many Americans have never had truly great Champagne. That’s because oceans of mass-produced “good, not great” Champagne has long dominated imports.

Great Champagne is all about the wine behind the bubbles. Hervé Rafflin gets this. He shows it with every bottle of Champagne he produces. Every bottle is a unique and expressive wine made into Champagne in the classic Champagne method. Hervé is the new generation of the Rafflin family. It’s a family that’s been growing wine grapes in Champagne since 1840. They have just five hectares of vineyards. And what vineyards they are!

Rafflin’s vineyards are in top-quality sites. The vineyards are in Champagne’s excellent Ludes sub-region. Located south of Reims, near the village of Mailly-Champagne, their vineyards produce incredibly high quality, rich, concentrated fruit. Their vineyards are all classified Premier Cru, and their vineyard work exceeds even the high standards of this prestigious region.

In the past, the Rafflin family sold all of their fruit to other producers. Rafflin’s fruit has appeared in high-end, highly-rated Champagnes under a variety of labels. Now they’re keeping some of their best fruit, from their finest vineyard plots, grown at low yields to promote concentration and intensity of flavor. Hervé Rafflin is making special wines with unique style and attention to detail. He’s proud to have his name on the label and he puts his best into every bottle.

Rafflin works fastidiously in the vineyards. It means he picks rich, concentrated and complex fruit. Though his boutique operation is tiny in scale, he makes his wines in a first-class, state-of-the-art facility. He is able to use the resources of the nearby co-op of Chigny-Les-Roses where Hervé’s uncle is the director. Like every great winemaker, Hervé’s touch is in knowing what to do and when. And then being patient. The result is a stunning Champagne.

The excellent fruit quality, with richness and concentration, means that the base wine is very complete. It needs little dosage, and Rafflin only used about 1.8 g/l. “Brut” Champagne can use up to 12 g/l.  Rafflin treated this Champagne to extended lees aging of about 48 months to enhance the mouthfeel and show off the complexity of his fruit. It’s about triple the 15 month standard for NV Champagne. And it’s another reason this is special.

Most amazing is the price. This top-quality, family-grown, hand-crafted, Premier Cru, Extra Brut Champagne is actually priced lower than most mass-produced grocery-store big-brand Champagnes. Order plenty! This is a Champagne you’ll want to go back to again and again. But order soon too; quantities are strictly limited.

Here’s more on this great Champagne:

This Champagne, the NV Hervé Rafflin Nature’L 1er Cru Extra Brut, comes from the sensational base vintage of 2012. As Jancis Robinson explained, 2012 was: “An exceptional vintage in Champagne. Despite low yields thanks to frost, hail and disease early in the season, August saw conditions improve dramatically resulting in exemplary maturity, acidity and grape health at harvest.” Decanter called the 2012 vintage “Exceptional” and rated it 5/5 (the last 5/5 vintage was 2008).

This is a blend of 35% pinot meunier, 34% pinot noir and 31% chardonnay from vines up to 48 years old. Rafflin made the wine simply and patiently, vinifying it in stainless steel tanks. Total SO2 is very low, about 35 mg/L. The original wine was bottled in 2013 and aged on its lees until disgorgement in 2017. About 8,000 bottles were made.

Here’s how it tastes:

This pale lemon pulp colored Champagne has a fine and delicate bead. The pure and intense aromas bring to mind poached pears, red berries and crushed stones. The palate is impressively pure, rich and concentrated with fine silken texture and excellent energy. The finish is pure, clean, long and pleasing. There is a perfect balance of vibrancy and richness that is very “vinous” and leaves the palate coated with delicate red fruit and stony minerals. This leaves higher-priced “Grandes Marques” NV Brut Champagnes in the dust. Serve this in a full-bowled red wine glass (not a skinny flute) to get the full aromatic experience. This is Champagne you can lose yourself in– the aromas and flavors saturate your senses and evolve minute by minute as the wine warms and airs.

Champagne fans should stock up. Even if you don’t usually seek out Champagne, consider this. It’s a wonderful wine to start any meal or any celebration. It’s perfectly dry yet has the concentration to pair beautifully with all kinds of seafood and poultry dishes. We’ve never seen a review. This is the sort of low-production wine that could jump in price markedly with one mention in a popular review. Stock up before that happens! And please remember you heard about it from Arrowine first!

Ordering:

Again, to order please call Arrowine.  We’re at 703-525-0990 (Arlington, VA) or 202-785-0785 (Washington, DC). Please call the location where you would like to pick up your order. The Champagne arrives tomorrow, Wednesday November 22nd, 2017. Sale prices are good for one week if supplies last (but this small production exclusive Champagne will likely sell out sooner).

Thank you for taking the time to read about this top-of-the-class, drastically under-priced, tiny-production Champagne.

Jim Cutts

Written by:

Category: Email Specials Wine

Posted On: 21 Nov 17