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Domaine Diot

17/12/2018
The cult of innovation

It's a secret not to disclose ... The most recent cuvée produced by the Jean Diot champagnes is a still wine! Run by Jean-Philippe Diot, the small family estate founded in 1960 by his father and mother, Jean and Monique Diot, and since taken over by himself, his sister, Pascaline, her husband, José, and his own wife, Bénédicte, made a point of surprising and innovating. They recently released a white Coteaux Champenois, vintage 2015, but not declared, in magnums! Why this challenge? Because such a wine marketed in such a bottle did not exist on the market. It was therefore necessary to create it. The production is more than limited—150 magnums—but it illustrates the spirit and approach of this atypical Champagne house located in Vinay, on the southern slopes of Epernay, and whose motto is “Impassive is not Diot”.
 

José (Champagne Diot), Delphin (La Briqueterie), Paolo Basso, Jean-Philippe Diot, Yves Chapier et Jean-Pierre (sommeliers de Champagne).

Since the children of Jean and Monique took over the reins of the domain in the early 2000s, they sought to enhance their native terroir through highly original cuvées.

The production is divided into two ranges, a Classic range, one called Extase. An iconic cuvée from the Classic range is Brut Sélection, a blend of 40% Chardonnay, 40% Meunier and 20% Pinot Noir with up to 25% reserve wines to ensure consistent style. A harmonious wine. Then comes the Blanc de Blancs, from the 2014 vintage, but not declared vintage, where the Chardonnays express by their fruitiness and freshness all the terroir of the southern hills of Epernay. Finally there is an Extra Brut, whose blend is the contrary of Selection: 40% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir and 20% Meunier, all aged at least four years on laths.

The Extase range includes a Blanc de Noirs, with 60% Meunier and 40% Pinot Noir, from three or four plots of old vines—the oldest of which is 76 years old and continues to produce exceptional juices—and dosed with only 6 grams. There is also an Extase Rosée, composed of 94% Chardonnay and 6% red wine made from Pinot Noir, of the 2014 vintage and not dosed. For Jean-Philippe, it was a question of creating a young vintage, a reflection of the terroirs of Vinay and Moussy, fruity and fresh at the same time. At the tasting, the absence of dosage became obvious.

Finally there is Exception Boisée, a blend of three grape varieties, 2011 vintage and whose still wines spend nine months in Burgundy barrels. Originality predominates at Champagnes Jean Diot and for next year, Jean-Philippe is thinking of a white Meunier, from its famous old vines ...

Gérald Olivier

 

Paolo Basso's reviews

Blanc de Blancs Brut

Pale yellow with silvery shades. Expressive and intense nose with scents of yeast, fresh grass, butter biscuit, fine spices. Very pure and direct first taste with a lovely refreshing acidity and a firm and solid structure. Long finish underlined by a very savory persistent note. Excellent for the aperitif and with roasted or grilled fish.

 

Extase, Blanc de Noirs BrutLight straw-yellow colour, golden shades. Delicate nose that deserves some aeration in glass in order to reveal aromas of citrus, a touche of exotic fruits, white pepper and spices. Beautiful dense and expressive palate with a solid and very savory structure. Deep finish that highlights the beautiful freshness and intensity of the spicy side. Beautiful gastronomic cuvée to serve over delicate fish or poultry dishes.
 

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