Charles Ellner "Carte d'Or" Brut Champagne (Previously $35)

SKU #1129025 91 points Wine Spectator

 An expressive Champagne, featuring flavors of white cherry, acacia blossom, spice and slivered almond, set on a refined bead and layered with sleek acidity. This is linear and focused, with a hint of salinity lingering on the finish. (AN)  (7/2015)

90 points Vinous

 Vivid yellow. Aromas of redcurrant, orange zest and white pepper, with a smoky quality in the background. On the palate, supple red berry and pit fruit flavors are given lift and cut by a hint of dusty minerals. Rich yet lively wine with solid finishing punch and lingering spiciness. (JR)  (1/2015)

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Staff Image By: John Majeski | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 12/31/2016 | Send Email
We carry a few champagnes in the under-$50 range that flat-out scintillate and astonish--the Launois Cuvee of course...and now you can add to that one of our newest direct import bottlings, the Charles Ellner Carte D'Or, an inspiring rendition, replete with wonderful flavors of white nectarines, citrus, red cherries and fine pastry dough. The perfect bubbly to celebrate the New Year or any occasion calling for a classic, well-articulated champagne. Enjoy!

Staff Image By: Olivia Ragni | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/13/2016 | Send Email
The whole lineup of Charles Ellner blew us away with complexity and elegance all around. The Carte d’Or is my favorite of the bottlings. It is a little different from your typical Brut Champagne, they intentionally hold back malolactic fermentation making for a Champagne with loads of character. There are flavors of nuts, minerals and fino sherry, balanced with notes of white nectarine, cranberry and a hint of caramelized apples. This is an incredibly complex Champagne for under $35 a bottle.

Staff Image By: David Othenin-Girard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/27/2016 | Send Email
I was skeptical thanks to the wonky label, but I am converted. I even think the label has started to grown on me. Here we have wonderful balance and depth, a sign that the wines in the cuvee are perfectly matured. Indeed, the elevage must have been of the very highest quality. Expect a nose of dense stone fruit (apricot jam) spread next to the finest wildflower honey. A slight breadiness keeps the aromas from feeling too sweet. The palate is perfectly balanced with less sweet flavors and the perfect dose of acidity. Round ripe citrus, complex leesy notes and a lengthy closure. Truly an honor to sell the estate bottlings from this wonderful negoc.

Staff Image By: Diana Turk | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/25/2016 | Send Email
I was impressed with this Champagne at first sip! This is a classic style with no malolactic fermentation, aged six years on the lees. There's a nutty, almost Sherry quality here, with slightly tropical notes of citrus banana and a biscuity finish. Incredible quality and priced for an everyday celebration, Carte d'Or is a gorgeous, interesting introduction to the Charles Ellner offerings.

Staff Image By: Daniel Maas | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/23/2016 | Send Email
Being a small negociant from what some may call "the wrong side of the tracks", here are a few things that Charles Ellner does not do: They don't purchase fruit. The absolutely never do any maloactic fermentation. And they absolutely do not price themselves past what people want out of an everyday champagne. What they DO DO, however, is make insanely elegant sparkling wine that drinks far beyond the modest price. Mostly Chardonnay and a bit of Pinot Noir, this spends an impressive five years on the lees, creating a vibrant and long-lasting complexity reminiscent of the best of sherry wines. Citrus fruit and just a hint of yeasty-dough, this is one to stock up on.

Staff Image By: Scott Beckerley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/17/2016 | Send Email
This bargain champagne has a very bright character lemon/lime flavors followed by bright red fruits and pastry dough notes. Very, very pleasant and drinkable. Bargain hunters rejoice!

Staff Image By: Andrew Stevens | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/17/2016 | Send Email
Charles Ellner is a new Direct Import for us and another excellent reason to shop our Direct Imports over the big houses. The wines we are bringing in from them are all estate fruit and all from Epernay and yet they are all at an amazing price. The Carte d'Or is 75% Chardonnay and 25% Pinot Noir which gives it length and complexity while maintaining a rich golden honeyed note that I personally love. This wine is rich and complex and finishes clean and is so good especially for its price.

Staff Image By: Heather Vander Wall | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/14/2016 | Send Email
What a great Champagne! This is one of my new favorites in our Direct Import portfolio. When my colleagues and I enjoyed a bottle recently, I was struck with the stunning balance in the wine. Not only does it show plenty of bright, young fruit, but the wine also includes notes of lightly toasted almond, tangerine, and white flowers. All in all a great new addition to our offerings!

Staff Image By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 4/6/2016 | Send Email
This all estate-grown blend of 75% Chardonnay and 25% Pinot Noir is an outstanding value in top-class Champagne. This wine has been aged for over five years on the lees and has a wonderful lemon curd and brioche nose. They never do malolactic at Charles Ellner, and because of that decision they must age the wines longer... The results are spectacular. This has incredible texture and finesse, but also fantastic mineral-laden length!

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- 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.


- 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.