Champagne Vilmart et Cie. is arguably the greatest of the smaller Champagne houses that own and maintain their own vineyards (an arrangement known as grower Champagne). This bottling of Vilmart’s non-vintage rosé “Cuvée Rubis” combines 90% Pinot Noir and 10% Chardonnay from the 2013 and 2014 vintages.
Some Champagne is quiet and subtle, a whisper. Vilmart, however, is audacious and luxurious and exotic, a bit flamboyant even. The still wine at is core is aged for ten months in oak casks prior to secondary fermentation. Incredibly expressive, the wine is salmon-pink to the eye. The mousse is delicate and persistent. The Pinot Noir brings richness, the Chardonnay brings elegance. On the nose, you will find an intense aroma of wild raspberries and wild strawberries, which carry through on a nuanced palate.
“The NV Premier Cru Cuvée Rubis is a blend of 90% Pinot Noir and 10% Chardonnay, here comprising 60% from the 2014 vintage and 40% from the 2013 vintage. The wine was aged in barrels for ten months (no malolactic) and shows a lovely, luminous onion skin color or amber rosé color. Ripe and delicate on the nose, with brioche and wild red berry aromas, this Rubis is pure, vital, full of grip and energy and pretty mineral in the firmly structured, highly tensioned finish. This has great freshness and lots of redcurrant flavors but also some phenols in the aftertaste. This is excellent, but I’d keep to for another couple of years.”
92 points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Aug 2018
“A mouthwatering rosé Champagne, with a fine, lively mousse and a delicate skein of spice unraveling through the flavors of white peach, blood orange granita, saffron and almond biscotti. Offers a lingering, chalk-tinged finish. Disgorged November 2016. Drink now through 2022.”
93 points, Wine Spectator, Nov 2018
“The NV Cuvée Rubis, a blend of 2014 and 2013, is unusually strict and severe. Those are not bad qualities at all, but this edition is especially focused and pulsing with energy. The cranberry, white flowers, grapefruit and white pepper notes are finely cut. In many years, I find the Cuvée Rubis to be airy and even a touch diffuse, but in this release, the wine is finely etched and sculpted, not to mention a huge overachiever. I loved it. The Rubis is 90% Pinot Noir (of which about 15% is still red wine) and 10% Chardonnay. Disgorged November 2016. Dosage is 9 grams per liter.”
93 points, Antonio Galloni, vinous, July 2018