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Back in Stock - K&L’s Top Selling Direct Import Champagne - 12/18/2017 - Champagne

Our holiday allocation of Launois has arrived, and as always, it is best to buy early to avoid disappointment. A best-selling, staff and customer favorite, Launois doesn’t only deliver outstanding value, but their bottlings are of impeccable quality, standing shoulder to shoulder with the best cuvees from the top Champagne houses. Given the high demand, these never stick around long, so make sure you place your order today.

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Launois "Cuvée Reserve" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne ($34.99)

This 100% estate grown, grand cru blanc de blancs is made entirely with old Chardonnay selections from Mesnil, Cramant and Oger. This is our number one most re-purchased Champagne, and is often sold out! -Gary Westby

Staff ImageGary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 05, 2017

We are very fortunate to be the importer for this great cult producer of blanc de blancs in the famous village of Mesnil. Launois is the only Champagne that I have sold to someone from Champagne to bring back to Champagne with them! It is that sought after! All grand cru, estate grown Champagne doesn't get better than this, but it is almost always more expensive. This is a wine of depth, finesse and intrigue and yet is about as easy as it gets to drink without engaging the grey matter at all. When we get it, it is always snapped up in a hurry... Don't wait and get disappointed!

Staff ImageMari Keilman | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: May 18, 2016

From the first sniff of the Launois Cuvee Reserve, the Grand Cru Cotes des Blancs minerality is upfront and present. The Cuvee Reserve can be enjoyed in its youth with notes of clean chalk, bright meyer lemon and a surprisingly long finish of toasted brioche.

Staff ImageDavid Driscoll | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: May 17, 2016

An absolutely delicious, world-changing, life-altering experience. When you taste Launois's Cuvee Reserve and you realize that you only paid $35, you start to wonder what else you've been overpaying for? What about those shoes you ordered online? What about that special cheese you bought from the artisan market? Maybe there are other secrets like this out there that you just don't know about. Credit our own Gary Westby for the epiphany. Just don't bother him once we're sold out again. This is bright, clean, refreshing, and stunningly elegant 100% Grand Cru quality fruit and it's TO DIE FOR.

Staff ImageAndrew Stevens | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: May 17, 2016

This is one of the most highly anticipated bubblies we carry, both from our customers and from our staff. Stone fruit and minerality play against the bright citrus notes and lively acid carries the wine to incredible length without being too tart. This bottle just drinks so well and goes down so smoothly that it always seems a shame that we cannot carry more of it. Pick it up soon because it will sell out fast.

Staff ImageJim Barr | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: May 14, 2013

Produced from Chardonnay [obviously, since it is Blanc de Blancs], this amazing Gem throws tons of yeasty, nutty, creamy fruit at you both in the nose and on the palate, with brilliant complexity, and a lush, broad, and rich finish. The Bean has ordered me to bring at least one case of this home for our consumption in the next one to three-plus years. I will probably bring home more than that. 12.0% ABV

Staff ImageShaun Green | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: May 07, 2013

There's not a lot more to say about this one, it a no-brainer! Grand Cru Champagne of this quality at this price is just not to be missed.

Staff ImageMike Parres | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: December 14, 2011

This is one of the best Champagnes in our entire stock, all Chardonnay and all Grand Cru from the villages of Mesnil, Oger, Cramant and Avize. Buy now, it will be gone soon !

Staff ImageJeff Garneau | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: December 09, 2011

I am embarrassed to admit that before I met Gary Westby, our Champagne buyer, I was not a drinker of Champagne. I probably had had one or two bottles of mediocre, bulk-produced sparkling wine (not Champagne) and dismissed all sparkling wines on that basis. Then Gary introduced me to grower-producer Champagnes like the Launois "Cuvée Reserve" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne. The quality--the authenticity--of the wines was a revelation. And the great prices made possible through our direct import program made it impossible not to try as many as I could. If you want to learn about the Côte des Blancs--the home of the finest Chardonnay in Champagne--about Grand Cru sites like Mesnil and Oger, then this is a tutorial in a glass. Fine bead. Clean. Crisp. Wonderfully mineral in its expression, while still rich in texture. Try it on its own as an aperitif or, better yet, with our local Dungeness crab.

Staff ImageKirk Walker | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: July 09, 2009

It is hard to miss this wine with its great packaging, but more importantly it is the juice between the bubbles. Ever since I started working for K & L, first bottle I took home was this wine!, I have been a big fan. Broad rich on the palate with a great bead. The flavors lean towards white Burgundy, what's not to like?

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2008 Launois "Spécial Club" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne (750ml - ships as 1.5L) ($59.99)

Without a doubt, this is one of the best Champagnes we carry at any price. Made from two plots of 65-year-old vines, one in the grand cru of Oger called the Chenys and one in Mesnil called the Derriere Maison, this is among the ultimate expressions of Chardonnay that we have to offer. The wine shows the paradox of 2008 perfectly with great ripeness and scintillating acidity. Add in the richness and complexity of old massal-selected from grand cru, mid-slope sites and you have a must buy for any Champagne lover! Because of the shape of this 750ml bottle, it must ship in a magnum box. (Gary Westby, K&L Champagne Buyer)

Staff ImageGary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 05, 2017

This is one of the most profoundly great young vintage Champagnes that I have ever had, and I bought a case for my own cellar. The 2008 vintage is a historic one, and either the greatest or tied for the honor in this young century. The Champagne that Bernard Launois was able to make from his two oldest Mesnil plots in this great year promises to be equally historic. The only problem is that it tastes far to good now... And I know that it will do nothing but improve. I will put this case at the bottom of a tall corner stack in my cellar! This Champagne has not only the richness of a 2002, but also the laser minerality of the best 2004's. It has it all!

Staff ImageJeff Garneau | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: June 28, 2017

I first purchased Champagne Launois Special Club bottling with the 2000 vintage at the urging of our Champagne buyer, Gary Westby. I was so impressed I made sure to buy at least a few bottles of every subsequent release the 2002, 2004, 2005 and 2006. The only regret I ever had was not buying more. Now we have in stock the 2008 Launois Special Club, and it is unquestionably the finest vintage of this wine I have tasted to date. It combines exceptional richness with superb focus and intensity. Very precise with admirable persistence. This is showing remarkably well now but will really shine with a few years in the cellar.

Staff ImageCindy Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: June 28, 2017

Looking back, my last Launois Champagne review was for the 2005 Special Club. Now we are on to the 2008 and they are very, very different wines! The 2008 is a classic example of Mesnil's bright, chalky terroir and that electric backbone of minerality. Letting it warm up just a bit provides hints of future enjoyment with lemon curd and graham cracker crumbs. A prime candidate for ageing, you will wish you'd bought twice as much!

Staff ImageMuriel Sarik | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: June 28, 2017

This is a perfect champagne! I tasted this with our closing staff last week and we were wowed! We were all looking at each other then our glass then each other. I don't know if we were in awe or just pure bliss.This is a must have for champagne lovers......

Staff ImageAlex Schroeder | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: June 28, 2017

This is one of those special bottles that has a je ne sais quoi" that is difficult to put into words. You know that a Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs from the best parcels of Launois old Chardonnay vines on the Cotes de Blancs in Mesnil is going to be special. Indeed, this has beautiful, rich flavors of meyer lemons, fresh nectarine and acacia blossom, with subtle hints of minerals, nutmeg, coriander and walnuts, all perfectly blended and balanced, and amplified by the stellar 2008 acidity. The juicy flavors stick to your palate for over a minute, and leave you shaking your head in disbelief at just how good a Champagne can be. Tasting this could almost be described as an epiphany moment for me, and I am certain it will only improve with age.

Staff ImageStefanie Juelsgaard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: June 27, 2017

I was extremely fortunate enough to go through a tasting of the Launois Quartz with some fellow staff members the other day, which markedly demonstrated the undeniable benefits of letting that Champagne sit for a year before popping it open. I have been told to follow the same principle with this Launois and if the extra aging time improves it, I can only image that this will be one of my favorite wines of all time. It is phenomenal now, but because it contains that backbone of acidity, it can age for decades and will unbelievably only get better. Like Gary Westby, I am going to have to hide it to keep from opening it tomorrow, but I know it will be so worth it when I do.

Staff ImageLilia McIntosh | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: June 27, 2017

Have you ever tasted wine that is so perfect you would not take or add anything extra to it?! Well, this is what 2008 Launois Special Club is! If I had to choose one word to describe it that would be "pristine". Its pure and fresh acidity marries precisely with roundness and richness of the fruit, creating absolutely perfect (I am not afraid to use this word, because that's what it is!) Champagne. Hats off to Launois for making such beauty and to Gary Westby for finding it and bringing it to us!

Staff ImageScott Beckerley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: June 27, 2017

This top tier champagne from our beloved Launois is one of my very favorites of the last 10 years. While the 2006 had a quite rich and round character, the 2008 is more structured, with higher acidity and brightness. As per usual, the textbook Launois creaminess is present, with more chalk-driven minerality than previous, citrus fruit, green apple, white floral notes, and background nuts and toffee. This bottling should age extremely gracefully over the next decade plus. My previous favorite was the 2004, with its laser-like acidity, which I bought in the magnum. I may actually like this one a little bit more for its added richness! Please, please, please, ship those mags soon, Severine!