Michel Arnould "Reserve" Brut Verzenay Champagne

SKU #995496 90 points Decanter

 Opens with a fanfare of peach, pear and spiced lemon; subtle architecture in the mouth with a chalky subtext and attractive orchard fruit, transported by a flowing mousse. Pretty accomplished and serious. (panel tasting)  (2/2017)

K&L Notes

If you have enjoyed the wines of Lallement, Bollinger and Krug in the past, I think you will very much enjoy Michel Arnould. They are bold, masculine Champagnes with plenty of toasty flavor. This is a blend of 75% Pinot Noir and 25% Chardonnay, entirely from estate vineyards in the Grand Cru of Verzenay. This is a great party Champagne, since it is full of flavor yet refreshing and moreish. The hazelnut Pinot character so unique to the village of Verzenay is pronounced in this wine, and many good tasters have mistaken it for barrel fermented (it is actually all stainless and enamel fermented) when presented the wine blind. The texture is full and the bead is refined. In short, this is a Champagne that you will be proud to serve to your guests, or perhaps not too proud to save for yourself! (Gary Westby, K&L Champagne Buyer)


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Price: $32.99

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Product Reviews:

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By: Alex Schroeder | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/7/2019 | Send Email
I love to compare this to Veuve Clicquot. They both have roughly the same Pinot/Chardonnay percentages, but that’s where the similarities stop. Arnould Reserve is a family made wine, with entirely estate fruit, entirely from Grand Cru vines, aged a full 3 1/2 years. At nearly half the price. This is one of those wines that has an eye-widening effect after the first sip. Bright bing cherry, gala apples, honey and a touch of smoke on the nose, nutty brioche integrated throughout. The grand cru power of the fruit is lifted perfectly by brisk minerals and the nutty fruity finish just goes on and on. You want to know what the fuss about grower champagne is? Here it is, under $35!

By: Rachel Alcarraz | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/5/2019 | Send Email
One of the longest running Direct Import champagnes at K&L is Michel Arnould. Their reserve is a beautifully composed, rich style champagne that is bold with toasted brioche matched by a beautiful, lengthy, citrus driven acidity. The ripeness of Pinot Noir comes from the Northern facing hills of Verzenay and is balanced with just 25% Chardonnay. A round, textural palate with a long lasting finish.

By: William Beare | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/5/2019 | Send Email
Pinot Noir grown on slopes that don't face south? How could it be? Maybe because an ancient meteor crashed into the hillside years ago, forever changing the soil composition to create ideal growing conditions. Probably because of a strange warm air current that winds around Arnould's slope and breathes life back in to fragile vines of Pinot Noir. The result is a very delicate blanc de noirs that doesn't feel as muscular as others, but still has all the elements that I love from red grape champagne. It retains brightness, while having wonderfully concentrated fruit and a rich nuttiness, and a core of strong acid that make it a great contender for a NV to put away for a bit of time.

By: Shaun Green | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/5/2019 | Send Email
Verzenay has the distinction of being north facing, yet decidedly warmer and able to produce wonderful Pinot Noir. The Michel Arnould Reserve uses this (75% Pinot Noir) to produce a wonderfully rich and mouth filling champagne with a charming fruit profile combining white peachy fruit and red berries. A layer of creamy nuttiness is the perfect compliment and lovely acidity holds it all together perfectly.

By: Chris DePaoli | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/5/2019 | Send Email
This Manhattan-soaked-cherry-dipped-in-hazelnut-creme-and-turned-into-a-drink is a good time bottle, and is an excellent food pairing offering from a region not given enough attention in that arena. Cleaner than one might expect from the 3-to-1 Pinot Noir and Chardonnay ratio, it is still full bodied and ripe, but with a lingering acidity that is pretty surprising the first go around.

By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 1/24/2018 | Send Email
The wines of Verzenay are some of my very favorite in all of Champagne, and Patrick Arnould of Champagne Michel Arnould makes some of the very best. This wine has the magical hazelnut quality that many (including myself!) often miss for wood treatment in blind tastings. Because this Grand Cru village faces north the wines are always electric and vibrant, even with high percentages of Pinot in the blend. This is one of our finest values in top grower Champagne, and the price makes it unmissable!
Top Value!

By: Scott Beckerley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/29/2017 | Send Email
This standard bearer of Champagne Michel Arnould is both high quality and a fine value. The Pinot Noir dominant blend is redolent with deep cherry fruit, toasted nuts and fine acidity. It could err on the side of big and bold but, it stops just short and offers up balance and interesting character. A great bubbly to drink on its own or to pair with fowl, pork or even lighter beef dishes.

By: Jeff Garneau | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/28/2017 | Send Email
One of the remarkable things about our direct import program in Champagne and the many small grower producers with whom we work is the opportunity to taste wines from a specific region of Champagne, wines that reflect the particular terroir of one village or another. Upon first sip, I absolutely fell in love with the wines of Michel Arnould. In places like Verzenay and Bouzy in the Montaigne de Reims, Pinot Noir is king. These are big, bold, black fruited Champagnes that really deserve to be drunk out of a Burgundy glass and paired with a meal. The Michel Arnould Verzenay Reserve Brut Cham[pagne is a great introduction to the region, and a steal at this price.

By: Mahon McGrath | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/24/2017 | Send Email
Exceedingly well composed, the tension between the palate’s richness and the countervailing tug of acidity is judged just right. Flavor-wise, there’s some nuttiness, white berry, and waxy fruit, with a wee hint of bolete in back of it all. Texturally, it is quite fine: this is the complete package. My only nit to pick here is the under-the -radar label, but don’t let that deter you from the superlative Champagne underneath it.

By: Gary Norton | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 12/30/2015 | Send Email
This is a fantastic non-vintage bottling from Michel Arnould. The blend consists of a heavy dose of Pinot Noir (75%) and the rest Chardonnay, which creates a wonderfully delicate and floral nose that leads into heaps of red fruit and red berries. The finish is clean and citric. A truly special bottle of bubbles.

By: Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/18/2015 | Send Email
A super pretty, floral, pure and elegant Champagne. Aromas of spiced red berries, baked bread, and rose petal. On the palate it has lovely soft red fruit from the wines 75% Pinot Noir composition. Great drive and freshness on the palate. A lovely expression of this special village (Verzenay). Clean, crisp and quaffable. Great party Champagne. A serious value at just over $30. Crushes most of the "big house" guys on quality at a considerably lower price point.
Top Value!

By: Diana Turk | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/16/2015 | Send Email
Creamy with a bright apple nose and solid minerality, this is classic Verzenay: qualities of hazelnut and cherry shine through, with a richness that almost defies its stainless and enamel aging. The great price makes this beauty go down even easier - a perfect party-pleasing Champagne.

By: Greg St. Clair | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/15/2015 | Send Email
Glass Full Glass Full Glass Full Glass Full Glass Empty
I love the smooth nature of this Champagne, that subtle richness of the mousse, just a creamy texture yet backed up by an excellent acidity, crisp, light and refreshing--the best of both sides. Such a deal, buy two!
Drink from 2015 to 2018

By: Olivia Ragni | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/15/2015 | Send Email
I'm still sticker shocked at the price for this Champagne, I can't believe it's only $33. This bubbly has such complexity and elegance. The nose provides notes of apple, pith and chalky minerality while the palate is classic Verzenay with black cherry and hazelnut. The palate is rich with a beautiful creamy texture, yet this wine sees no oak. A gorgeous wine for such a steal!

By: Kyle Kurani | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/15/2015 | Send Email
Full of vibrancy and richness playing off of each other in perfect harmony, the Michel Arnould Reserve is a stunning example of Grand Cru Champagne. Out of the gate with beautiful aromas of perfectly ripened melon, green apple and spice cake, the nose is effusive and rich. The palate plays fresh notes of watermelon and racy acidity against richer tones of hazelnut and bread dough. The marriage of the racy and rich are what really make this a very complete and extraordinarily pleasing bottle to drink. Powerful and elegant at the same time--that only can be achieved with the highest quality terroir available in the region.

By: Jim Boyce | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 1/2/2014 | Send Email
Rich and toasty, yet fresh and focused, this Champagne is chock full of stone fruit and hazelnut. As mentioned, this is a lot of wine for the price!

By: Mari Keilman | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/31/2012 | Send Email
Michel Arnould's wines are the most harmonious juxtaposition between tension and balance, broadness and precision, elegance and power. The Verzenay Brut with its elegant texture, refined bead and sweet citrus and wild berry palate, lends perfectly for pairing with an eclectic and diverse menu. The Verzenay Brut has a playful nature with the ripe fruit bouncing off of the bracing acidity.

By: Christie Brunick | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/3/2011 | Send Email
Quite possibly the best deal in Champagne ever! Michel Arnould delivers way above and beyond! This direct import Pinot Noir based cuvee has a brightness to it that most Champagnes in this price range lack. Lots of citrus and wild berry fruit on the mid palate with bursting minerality and acid with a toasty but clean finish! Don't let this one pass you by...

By: Steve Greer | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/13/2009 | Send Email
What a beautiful Champagne. The elegant texture with great depth of flavor is what stood out for me. Loads of nuts and fruits (apricots) all wrapped by a great mouthfeel and a toasty finish. This has become my favorite under $30 Champagne.

By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/6/2009 | Send Email
Very, very good for the money. MIxed wild berry fruit show good richness with terrific cut and focus as well. Did I mention that this is a lot of wine for the money??

By: Cindy Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/19/2009 | Send Email
This Champagne has big style! I love to treat myself to a glass on a Sunday afternoon, read a good book - and pointedly ignore the laundry.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Other White Wines

Country:

France

- 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.
Sub-Region:

Champagne

- 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.
Alcohol Content (%): 12