Critical Acclaim: 93 pts Wine & Spirits; 91 pts Robert Parker's Wine Advocate.
Tasting Notes: "This is pinot meunier grown in sandy clay soils, and if you need an excuse to give this variety a shot, Mariko Kobayashi of NYC’s Chambers Street Wines described the appeal of this wine— and the appeal of the best contemporary meunier—as “a clean, refreshing purity. The wine has so much presence without being in your face.” It’s an easy pleasure to access, with wild-strawberry freshness and cool, tart yellow-apple acidity adding to the cleansing feel of the bubbles. Gentle and lively."- Wine & Spirits.
"Based on the 2018 vintage and disgorged in April 2021, the latest release of Orban's NV Extra-Brut is showing nicely, bursting with aromas of pear, white currants, fresh mint and yellow plums. Medium to full-bodied, fleshy and incisive, it's a pillowy, elegant wine, with fine concentration and a seamless, charming profile that reflects the inherent generosity of the dominant year. It's the finest rendition of this Pinot Meunier bottling that I've tasted to date. Drink date: 2022-2027."- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate.
About the Winery: Leopold Orban, winemaker Francis Orban's great-grandfather, was one of the first recoltant-manipulants in the small village of Leuvrigny. From a very early age, Francis knew he'd follow in the family tradition of tending Pinot Meunier vines on the sandy, clay-rich soils of the Marne Valley. Indeed, after finishing his enological studies at the ripe age of 19, he joined the family business, imbued with a generations-deep passion for making pure Pinot Meunier wines. Too long seen as "just" a blending grape in other Champagne regions, Pinot Meunier has pride of place in the Marne Valley. Nearly 90% of Francis' vineyards are dedicated to this singular grape, as it is here where Pinot Meunier reaches its full potential. Above all, when allowed to shine as a single-varietal Champagne, Pinot Meunier delivers a vinous wine full of fresh fruit and lightly spiced with notes of vanilla and pepper. Full-bodied, vivacious and pure, it is a Champagne for true gourmands, who appreciate its flexibility at the table. Crucially, Francis adds some 50% reserve wine from recent vintages to his non-vintage Champagnes, for wines of incredible character and flavorful depth.
Varietal: Pinot Meunier.