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Philipponnat Clos des Goisses Juste Rosé 2012

Pinot Noir from Mareuil-sur-Aÿ, France, Champagne


Closure: Cork


2012 Philipponnat Clos des Goisses Juste Rosé

“The just-released 2012 Extra-Brut Clos des Goisses Juste Rosé shares the vinous, textural profile of the regular Clos des Goisses in this vintage, offering up aromas of mirabelle plum, crisp orchard fruits, white flowers, frangipane and papaya.

Full-bodied, broad and fleshy, it’s a rich, muscular Champagne of considerable depth and persistence.”

William Kelley, The Wine Advocate 95 Points AG 95 AK 97 JR 18

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Why is this Wine so Yummy?

The blend: 68% Pinot Noir, 32% Chardonnay.

Vinification: Traditional vinification in wooden barrels. There was no malolactic conversion.

Aging: Bottle aging on lees for nine years in the house’s historic cellars in Mareuil-sur-Aÿ.

Dosage: Extra Brut (4.5 g/L)  to give full expression to the vinosity and minerality of this exceptional vineyard.

Disgorged: March 2022.

Packaged in a solid oak box. The incredibly rare Juste Rosé was added to the portfolio in 1999, and 2009 is only the eighth release. The wine is based on the same blend as the Clos des Goisses 2009, with an addition of seven percent still Pinot Noir wine, made from the highest lieu-dit of the Clos des Goisses. Less than 3,000 bottles are produced in any given year.

Fermentation took place in large oak with a degree of maceration bringing in more grip than can be found in the Clos des Goisses proper. The wines did not go through malolactic, the idea being that the natural acidity would compensate for the richness provided by the terroir and the power of the vintage. The wine was aged for nine years, only being put on the market when perfectly mature, around 14 months after the Clos des Goisses bottling.

The Story

“…this clos is a special site, and the wine from it is truly remarkable.” Jamie Goode

“It is arguably the single greatest vineyard site in Champagne…” Peter Liem

“Clos des Goisses has always been one of the most extraordinary jewels in Champagne’s crown.” Tom Stevenson

“Philipponnat is known above all for the Clos des Goisses, a 5.5 hectare, south-facing vineyard purchased by Pierre Philipponnat in 1935. Recognizing the qualities of this unusual site he immediately began bottling the Clos des Goisses as a separate, single-vineyard champagne, an unheard-of practice at the time.” Peter Liem

The 2013 release is widely considered to be one of the most outstanding young wines released from the Clos des Goisses.

Of the 13 plots in the Clos, only the six finest were used to craft the Pinot-dominant 2013 from those six plots further selection culminated in the final blend.

“Why is it quite so good?” asks William Kelley

“It would appear that 2013 was the perfect storm: an early-ripening terroir in a cool, late vintage; moderately yielding Burgundian selections of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay that attained full maturity; and a willingness to make a strict selection have all come together to deliver a profound Clos des Goisses.” 

The clos is also the source of one of Champagne’s rarest and most unique rosé wines. The 2012 we offer today is the first release of Philipponnat’s Juste Rosé since the 2009. 

This year also sees the 1997 release of Philipponnat’s L.V. or Long Vieillissement i.e., ‘long aging’ project. It is widely accepted that the Clos des Goisses is one of the finest wines in Champagne for aging and needs at least 10-15 years to unveil its true majesty.

Thoughts on extended lees ageing from:

Wine Decoded’s Chief Wine Hacker, Paul Kaan

I made sparkling wine in Australia and Champagne in France. The first time you put 100,000 bottles away for their second fermentation is an experience of elation and trepidation in one. Until that second fermentation is finished you live on the knife’s edge of having stuffed up years of work or created that sparkle we all love!

Then comes the next set of decision: How do I store these bottles? How long do I wait before riddling them? How long will I leave them in contact with the lees (dead yeast from the second ferment)?

Philopponnat’s L.V. range is certainly pushing the envelope. With wines on lees for decades. Producers like Provost prefer absolute minimum time on lees believing the expression of the terroir will be diminished by time on lees. Personally I call what’s in the glass. Some of the most profound experience I’ve had involved Late Disgorged wines.

The pic below left shows champagne Sur Lie with maximum area of lees to wine contact. The pic on the right shows wines that have been shifted to being Sur Pointe (on point) for extend maturation. This shifts the lees into the neck of the bottle reducing the surface area of lees exposed to the wine and slowing the development of autolysis characters from the break down of yeast.

The environment in the bottle with all oxygen consumed by the yeast, 6.5 bar of pressure from a wine saturated with CO2, and, the reductive nature of the yeast lees, keeps the wine fresh. As time passes the wines harmonise, offering more depth of the mid-palate and build additional layers of complexity, the become seamless.

I’ve been lucky enough to bottle several vintages of sparkling wine, I still have magnums from the 1999 vintage on lease, and, uncovered a forget stash of bottles from 1998 just a week ago.

I love hand riddling these and disgorging them to drink immediately without dosage or resealing. The present such incredible freshness and pleasure!

If you ever get the chance to drink freshly disgorged, quality champagne with zero dose DO IT!

The History of Clos des Goisses

The Clos des Goisses is one of Champagne’s greatest and most important historic terroirs. The vineyard, situated in Mareuil-sur-Aÿ just a 10-minute drive east of Epernay, is located in an area that has forever been renowned for the quality of its wines, even before Champagne was sparkling! The site rises steeply from the edge of the Marne river and is planted with 3.5 hectares of Pinot Noir and two hectares of Chardonnay. It faces almost due south—one of the keys to its greatness—so ripeness is rarely an issue. This aspect, the extremely chalky soils and atypical warmth (an average growing season temperature of 1.5 °C higher than most of Champagne) results in one of Champagne’s most powerful and intense wines.

With good reason, this was the very first sparkling wine in Champagne to be bottled as a single vineyard wine (in 1935 as “Vin des Goisses”) and the quality has always been special. Today, with a focus on precise viticulture, old massale vines, moderate yields and ripe fruit at harvest time, the wine has never been better.

In his book, Champagne (Mitchel Beazley, 2017) Peter Liem writes that Philipponnat’s Clos de Goisses is “…a wine of intense minerality, a pure essence of Champagne’s chalk allied with ripe, vivid fruit flavours. It is arguably the single greatest vineyard site in Champagne…” He goes on to say, “From a top vintage, Clos des Goisses is one of the most exciting experiences that Champagne can offer.”

In the Vineyard

Clos des Goisses is a parcel of 11 Lieux Dits. Gois or Goisse meaning very steep gives us the first clue to the site. Yes it is very steep running at 45º. Facing due south the pure chalk slope receives sun for the full day. The warmth of the Clos des Goisses typically offers higher potential alcohol for the fruit, and, powerfull intense wines.

In the Winery

With the richness of the fruit, many of the processes and much of the decision making in the winery revolves around retention of freshness. For example malolactic fermentation is blocked. Yet there is a clear understanding of élévage with the use of barrel maturation. The wood sourced from Burgundy after it has seen 2-3 years of use. The house describes the wines of Clos desGoisses as ‘big, Burgundian style of champagne!’

Where in the World is Philiopponnat?

Philipponnat, has vineyards in Aÿ, Mareuil-sur-Aÿ and Avenay.

The map below shows the main sub-regions of Champagne

Click to enlarge🔎

From left to right Champagne vineyards by Soil Type, Aspect and Dominant Varietal

Click on a map to enlarge🔎

Want More?

For an in-depth history of the vineyard and its wines, along with a summary of the wine growing and winemaking, please see the links below.

95 Point

“The just-released 2012 Extra-Brut Clos des Goisses Juste Rosé shares the vinous, textural profile of the regular Clos des Goisses in this vintage, offering up aromas of mirabelle plum, crisp orchard fruits, white flowers, frangipane and papaya. Full-bodied, broad and fleshy, it's a rich, muscular Champagne of considerable depth and persistence.”

William Kelley, The Wine Advocate

95 Points

“The 2012 Extra-Brut Clos des Goisses Juste Rosé is a wild, exotic wine. Kirsch, white pepper, flowers, mint and cranberry lend a gorgeous air of exoticism. As always, the Rosé is light in body gracious and all finesse. The blend is 68% Pinot Noir and 32% Chardonnay. This is the first release made with a blend of what is essentially a Blanc de Noirs base, with the ‘still red’ portion (18%) coming from a saignée. Time in the glass brings out the breadth and natural texture of the year. This is a gorgeous Rosé from Philipponnat.”

Antonio Galloni, Vinous

97 Points

“A lovely powdery, generous sense of fruitiness characterizes the nose, which seemingly floats in on a sea breeze. The palate, rounded with the sunshine of 2012, has a hint of white truffle, suffused with notes of plum. There is concentration but also a lightness of touch, as well as a certain playfulness to the undeniable generosity and roundness that are contained in a rather sinuous, elegant body. The result is an impressive wine of exquisite balance, with a balm-like, almost emollient nature.”

Anne Krebiehl MW

Where in the world does the magic happen?

Champagne Philipponnat, Rue du Pont, Mareuil-sur-Ay, France