The bottle had drawn my eye many a times when opening the wine refrigerator, but it never seemed to be quite the right day to open it. I had fallen in love with the Varnier Fannière at last year’s annual Champagne tasting hosted by Federal Wine & Spirits and was holding on to it. I finally broke down a couple of days ago and delighted in what a wonderful Champagne this is. A real treat! Varnier Fannière is a very small producer. With only four hectacres of Chardonnay grapes (all Grand Cru), they produce only 2,500 bottles annually. The disgorgement date on the bottle I had was 06.06.2009.
The nose was freshly-baked, buttery brioche, with apple and almond. I couldn’t help but think of Flour Bakery’s incredible and addictive twice-baked brioche everytime I put my nose near the glass. The palate was lemon meringue pie. It had lively acidity, but was still very elegant and rich. The finish was a lingering toastiness.
PS I did have to chuckle, though, when I looked more closely at the bottle. Anyone remember the Van Halen logo from back in the 80s? Perhaps the VF logo was inspired by the band, or vice versa?