2005 Launois "Spécial Club" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne (ships as 1.5L)

SKU #1143207

We began importing the Champagnes of Launois about a decade ago, though we haven't been able to promote them properly because our allocations were very tight. Fortunately for us, Bernard Launois has decided to export more! Champagne Launois' wines are highly sought after, so much so, in fact, that we've sold their Champagne to Champenois who can't get it at home! Bernard Launois does things differently than the rest of his neigbors, picking a week to 10 days later and using only massal-selected plants rather than the more common clones. All of the Champagnes we import from them are 100% Grand Cru Chardonnay, and they all have the authoritative chalk-driven focus you would expect from top sites in the Côtes de Blancs. The Special Club is made from two 50-plus-year-old parcels, the best of the house's vines, and is one of the best Champagnes we sell at any price. Dry, precise and food-friendly, this is mind-blowingly good Champagne that you should not miss. *please note: this item must ship in styrofoam as a 1.5L, but this is a 750ml bottle.

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Price: $59.99

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By: Mellyn Craig |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/17/2013  | Send Email
Wow this is decadent Champagne! I loved the 2004 Launois Special Club, but the 2005 is even better in my opinion. Confection flavors of vanilla cupcake frosting, gram cracker, hazelnut, peaches and cream. This is a great choice for the holidays, or any night you want a special treat.

By: Gary Westby |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/17/2013  | Send Email
This luscious blanc de blancs is very different than the laser precise 2004 that preceded it and fans of wines like Taittinger’s Comtes de Champagne are going to flip for it. Made from two plots of over 50 year old vines, one in the Grand Cru of Oger called the Chenys and one in Mesnil called the Derriere Maison, this is one of the ultimate expressions of Chardonnay that we have to offer. These plots pre-date the clones, and are selection massal, giving the wine more complexity at the cost of yield and ease of farming. When I opened this for the staff on Tuesday we were knocked out by the nutty opulence of this Champagne and its generous croissant nose. This should continue to improve until 2025, but my first bottle won’t last the night… I have a Dungeness crab ready to pair with this in just a few hours!
Drink from 2013 to 2025

By: Cindy Westby |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/16/2013  | Send Email
After one sip (which frankly was all that was left after our staff tasting) - I knew this would be my go-to champagne for the holiday season. Out-classing many $100+ bottles, this Special Club from Launois has loads of generous old-vine fruit with the precision and backbone of Grand Cru Mesnil terroir. I can think of two perfect pairings for this wine: Alone, or with loved ones.

By: Keith Wollenberg |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/16/2013  | Send Email
Ok, folks. Here we go. I wondered how our friends at Launois could possibly follow the 2004 Special Club. well, yesterday I found out. They produced a rich, complex champagne of distinction and breeding. it's a bit less racy than the 2004, but it trades off a bit more volume in the mid-palate in exchange. And, it shows why so many champagne growers prize their oldest vines. the old-vine intensity sings through particularly clearly in a bountiful vintage like 2005. Complex and dleicious. What's not to like?
Top Value!

By: Kyle Kurani |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/15/2013  | Send Email
Another amazing vintage of Special Club! 2005 in Champagne ended with smiles on the faces of all the wine makers, an even growing season, perfect harvest mid-October, and beautiful fruit. This 2005 is everything you would expect from such an exceptional year. The Special Club is Launois’ crown jewel and is annually one of my favorite wines in the decadent, richer style of Champagne. The nose is full of vanilla shortbread and peaches with cream. The palate is one layer of confectionary richness after another: angel food cake, toasted hazel nut, and graham cracker, are all intertwined. Like walking into your favorite bakery and being enveloped with the aroma of all your childhood favorites.

By: Ryan Woodhouse |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/15/2013  | Send Email
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A very rich Champagne with ripe golden orchard fruit on the nose with toasty brioche notes. The wine shows toasted barley and Graham Cracker with a creamy texture and supple round mouth feel. A powerful crowd pleasing Champagne to enjoy this holiday season.

By: David Driscoll |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/15/2013  | Send Email
There's a load of rich, round, wonderfully tasting fruit right on the entry of the 2005 special club. The steely minerality balances it all out, however. Lots of biscuity goodness on the back end. I love this.

By: Shaun Green |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 10/15/2013  | Send Email
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The Launois 'Special Club' has regularly been a giant hit with our staff and customers alike and the 2005 is right in line. A bit richer than the 2004, it's really showing its old vine source (50+ year old vines)Fantastic creamy richness even right from the start and a long vanilla and nut cream component on the palate. Lots of brioche and a wonderful expression of its 100% Mesnil Chard. You can't go wrong with this one!
Drink from 2013 to 2020

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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.