Franck Bonville "Belles Voyes" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne

SKU #1007632 91 points Wine Spectator

 Richly spiced, with ground anise, clove, ginger and cardamom, this offers a lively bead, fresh acidity and flavors of quince, honey, pastry dough and golden raisin. Offers a soft, creamy finish. Drink now through 2018.  (12/ 2012)

90 points Wine Enthusiast

 This has finesse and elegance, with a thin stream of bubbles and crisp, dry apple flavor. It is taut with a cool feel, still young in the bottle and worth aging a year.  (12/ 2012)

K&L Notes

This is one of the best Champagnes we carry regardless of price. Made from the one and three quarters acre Belles Voyes vineyard in Oger, this is Bonville's top of the line Champagne. The vines were planted in the late twenties or early thirties and the vineyard is ideally located in the mid slope of this Grand Cru village. The wine is made entirely from the 2004 harvest and is all Chardonnay. Olivier Bonville ferments and ages the juice in old oak casks before bottling. The only wine I can compare it to is the Clos de Mesnil from Krug. It is the perfect Blanc de Blanc, rich and taut at once and any words that I use to describe it will not do it proper justice. (Gary Westby, K&L Champagne buyer) Rated Outstanding Plus/Exceptional Plus Potential from the Underground Wine Letter, which writes: "This is Franck Bonville’s top of the line cuvee. The wine never carries a vintage date although this wine is 100% Grand Cru Chardonnay from the great 2004 vintage....Les Belles Voyes is always an outstanding Champagne and this bottling is one of the best. Light yellow in color, the wine has a stunningly complex perfume with hints of apple, citrus, and pear with subtle nuances of spice and vanilla and a faint underlying crème brulee accent."

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Price: $69.99

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Product Reviews:

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By: Keith Wollenberg |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 8/2/2013  | Send Email
Based on the 2004 vintage, this is a terrifically rich and very lovely champagne, made from old vines, planted in the 1920s, long before commercial clones were available. The reulting concentration and depth is a reward that exceeds many champagnes costing well over $100.

By: Ryan Woodhouse |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/13/2013  | Send Email
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I don't think there is anything I can say about this wine that Gary or my colleagues haven't already said yet I feel compelled to review it. Hands down my favorite Champagne in the store. Even when you take much more expensive wines into account it's hard to say that considerably more cash gets you any improvement in quality.

By: Jeff Garneau |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 8/17/2012  | Send Email
When most people talk about "value for money" they are thinking of a great $10 red. At $67.99 this is our best "value" in Champagne, easily the equal of wines selling for many hundreds of dollars. This wine was featured in our last staff Champagne tasting and elicited a collective moment of silence in sheer appreciation. If you think you can't appreciate a great Champagne, try tasting this alongside the Franck Bonville "Brut Selection" Blanc de Blancs Champagne at $32.99 - excellent in its own right - and you will see what I mean.

By: Jim Boyce |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/30/2012  | Send Email
Exceptional. This bottle can match or outperform champagnes at twice the price. Amazing nose of citrus, green apple, and vanilla. Intriguingly full palate of pear, apple pie, and mineral notes with hints of baking spice. Absolutely delicious, pick a bottle up soon!

By: Christie Cartwright |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 6/1/2011  | Send Email
On of the most elegant yet powerful Blanc de Blancs Champagne I've had this year. I also think its one of the houses best cuvee's they've made that you can enjoy now or cellar for years! All 2004 vintage old vine fruit shows lovely integration on the palate. The nose is crisp and minerally with subtle sweet sugar cookie dough essences. Freshly smashed ripe apple crisps up on the palate with notes of allspice! A very amazing Champagne...treat yourself before its gone!

By: Melissa Smith |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 7/4/2010  | Send Email
Another DI FTW (Direct Import For The Win). I dream about this champagne. Fantastic vintage, phenominal grapes, perfectly selected barrels, taste this blind and you will understand the hype asssociated with its price.

By: Kirk Walker |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/13/2010  | Send Email
This could be the best Direct Import Champagne that we bring in! Depending on the day and my mood, it absolutely is! Old vine, single vineyard Chardonnay that spend some time in old Burgundy barrels, what is not to love about this?! It is great now, long complex and tasty, it get even better with bottle age (I had one from the first batch we brought in OM!@@#@$G!)

By: Gary Westby |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/7/2010  | Send Email
I almost find it embarrassing to drink this 3000 bottle production single vineyard Champagne as often as I do... But I get over it every time Cinnamon and I open a bottle. Like a great white Burgundy it has terroir, and the flavors are inimitably cotes de blancs Champagne. It has the complexity and the detail for the fussy wine person in me, but it is also shockingly easy to drink. The Belles Voyes always grows in my memory after having it. One of the most memorable bottles I drank of it was with a bib on, eating fresh king crab legs, but it is just as appropriate for the aperitif. Take advantage of our unfairly large allocation of this tiny production Champagne and treat yourself to a bottle!
Top Value!

By: Mari Keilman |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 6/11/2009  | Send Email
This champagne is definitley worthy of being referred to as a "baby Krug". Fresh and bright, yet with amazing aromatics of asian spice, lemon curd, orange zest and a touch of brioche. Always a stellar standout!

By: Scott Beckerley |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/2/2008  | Send Email
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Once the bottle is opened, a nose of lemon curd, citrus and brioche wafts up at you, immediately letting you know that there is a lot going on with this wine. Nutty background notes lend interest and make this a memorable Champagne. In the mouth, apricot, pineapple and cream are the primary flavors with Granny Smith apples and hazelnuts in the background. The citrus aspect of the chardonnay really comes out on the finish and lends a bit of zippiness to the overall impression.

By: Leah Greenstein |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 8/14/2008  | Send Email
Franck Bonville's exceptional cuvees come from the villages of Avize, Cremant and Oger and this, the Les Belles Voyes, is based entirely on the 2002 vintage. The nose on this wine was like a perfectly aged Corton Charlemagne, with hazelnut richness and a soft, balanced palate. Like a waltz for your senses: elegant and refined!

 By: Susan Purnell |  Review Date: 2/13/2009 
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I simple love Champagne and if I had only on bottle to drink on a lonely island it would be the Franck Bonville Les Belles Voyes. It must be because they ferment and age the Chardonnay juice in old oak casks before bottling. I love that extra richness that the oak gives the wine. I have turned on many a master distiller in Scotland to this fantastic Champagne!

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Additional Information:

Varietal:

Chardonnay

- It's hard to believe that up until about 30 years ago, this extremely popular varietal hid behind the veil of geographical names like Chablis and Puligny-Montrachet. Now grown all over the world and bottled by its varietal name, Chardonnay has achieved a level of branding unlike any other wine. Surprisingly, though, what you get when you buy Chardonnay can differ greatly from country to country and even within one country, depending on the climate where it's grown and how it is vinified and aged. From fresh, crisp and minerally with apple and lemon notes to rich and buttery with tropical fruit overtones, Chardonnay runs the gamut. In France's Burgundy, Chardonnay is the source of the prized wines of Chablis, Corton-Charlemagne, Mâcon, Meursault and Montrachet. It also the foundation of exceptional Champagne, where it is blended with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier or vinified on its own into Blanc de Blancs. It is also extremely popular in California, and is gaining popularity in Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Spain and South Africa.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Champagne

- The French region of Champagne (comprised of the towns of Rheims, Epernay, and Ay) was the first region in the world to make sparkling wine in any quantity. Today, the name of the region is synonymous with the finest of all sparkling wines, and winemaking traditions of Champagne have become role models for sparkling wine producers, worldwide. Surprisingly, the region of Champagne is now responsible for only one bottle in 12 of all sparkling wine produced. Styles of champagne range from the basic brut (often blends of several vintages), single vintage champagnes, and rose. View our bestselling Champagne.
Alcohol Content (%): 12.5