Memorable Champagnes of 2022

Treve Ring and Jamie Goode pick their memorable Champagnes of 2022. First up, it’s Ring’s selections, and then Goode’s. It makes for a mouthwatering list!

Treve Ring

My selections below aren’t necessarily the top scoring, or most baller bottles I had this past year, but they are the ones that stood tall in my mind. There are others equally shining, enjoyed without my notebook at hand: smouldering Champagne Clandestin Les Semblables 2018, tucked into a cosy booth at Noble Rot; the chalky and chiselled Champagne Pierre Gimonnet et Fils Fleuron 2015 shared at Brasserie l’Ecole on Vancouver Island; the taut, structural Champagne Éphémère 010 of Savart & Drémont enjoyed at a bustling Chambers NYC; Bérêche & Fils Campania Remensis 2013 with colleagues at Soif in Battersea after a long day of wine judging; the singular, striking Champagne Rémi Leroy Mer Sur Mont 2014 on a warm early summer evening al fresco in Toronto; and the confidently burnished, oxidative power of Champagne Jacques Selosse Substance in Vienna’s Le Cru, on a casual afternoon with friends. These special wines, like the notes below, are imprinted on my palate, heart, and memory, carrying forward into 2023 and beyond. 

Champagne Rémi Leroy Blanc de Blancs 2016
This is a rare Chardonnay from Southern Champagne’s Aube, a region dominated by Pinot Noir, even though 95 percent of the vineyard is Kimmeridgean soil (the same as in Chardy-central Chablis). The young Rémi Leroy farms 3 of his family’s 9 hectares here, selling the remaining fruit for additional income, and with the goal to use all of the fruit for his non-interventionist label. The only inputs he uses is a small addition of sulphur. This 2016 was dosed with 2 g/L, disgorged in April 2021. Tight and racy, with green apple, lemon meringue, and light brioche over a bed of deep chalk, anchoring this blanc. Chardonnay’s arrow structure keeps this streamlined, while the time on lees gives the gravitas. A striking, charismatic wine, drinking beautifully now. 94/100 (TR)

Champagne Dom Pérignon Vintage 2012
The most classic of the Classics? Dom Pérignon is named after the 17th century Benedictine monk, Dom Pierre Pérignon (1638-1715), who, by legend, is said to have invented sparkling wine while cellarmaster at the Abbey of Hautvillers. This is the prestige cuvée of Moët et Chandon since 1937. 2012 has been widely recognized as an epic vintage (reputed a ‘solar’ vintage, like 2022), so it’s little surprise this DP is glowing at present. A near split of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay (51% / 49%), this was disgorged in September 2020, with 5 g/L, after 7+ years sur lattes. Having most recently tasted the 2010 DP, this is leaps and bounds beyond. Exceptional depth and complexity here, with fine tuned lemon shaping green and red apple, white cherry, decadent brioche, across a deeply layered, deeply chalky core. Corseted with lemon zest, and laced with riveting salinity, this lingers extremely long on the chalky finish. Nimble, yet assertive, this DP merges elegance with power. Drinking so very well now, and all signs point to a lengthy future ahead. Wow. 96/100 (TR)

Champagne Stéphane Regnault Mixolydien No. 29 NV
After working as a sommelier in London and an aerospace engineer in Paris, Stéphane Regnault returned to his family’s Côte des Blancs domaine in 2007 and converted farming to organics with biodynamic practices. The domaine includes four hectares of Chardonnay divided equally between the legendary chalk terroirs of the Grand Cru villages Oger and Le Mesnil. The majority of the vines are between 40 and 60 years old. A passionate jazz saxophone player, he has named his three single-vineyard cuvées after a different jazz mode that each wine reminds him of. This BdB comes from the east-facing, slight slopes of Le Moulin in the Grand Cru Oger and its soft, chalk soils. This bottle was based in 2015, with 15% from 2014 (the start of the solera). Half the final wine was done in stainless, with 35% in barrel, with full MLF. This was disgorged in July 2020 with one g/L. This is his smallest cuvée, with 2500 bottles produced. Brioche, lemon and red/green apple open this chiselled, savoury-edged wine, imbued with chalk and lashed with marine salinity. Structural, tight, and fresh, with a fantastic presence and length. Worth seeking out. 93/100 (TR)

Champagne Charles Heidsieck Rosé 2008
This special blend of 63% Pinot Noir, 37% Chardonnay (including 9% Red Wine) is entirely Grand and 1er cru fruit, from 15 different crus. This aged 10 years on lees, and was disgorged with 7 g/L in January 2021. Serious stuff this, with numerous layers of cherry meringue, wild raspberry, light toast, and deep chalk, carved by lemon pith and peel, and buoyed by a cranberry acidity. So well knit and harmonious, with wonderful depth, and length, this beautiful wine is drinking lovely now, and still with time ahead. Rare to have this much finesse in a rosé. A surprising ‘well done Charlie’. 94/100 (TR)

Champagne Laherte Frères Blanc de Blancs Brut Nature NV
The Laherte family has a long history in the region. Founded in 1889 by Jean-Baptiste Laherte, the estate was initially made up of vines primarily in the village of Chavot. Fourth-generation vigneron Michel Laherte expanded the family estate, covering about five hectares. With his wife Cécile, the two young vignerons modernized the press and tanks but soon realized that too much modernity, such as herbicides and pesticides, would prevent full terroir expression in the wines. They began working the soils, gently vinifying the juices, and remaining humble and patient as the wines developed. In 2005, his son Aurélien Laherte overtook operations of the estate. The 10.5 hectares of Larherte vineyards are mainly situated in the Coteaux Sud D’Epernay, sandwiched between the Cotes des Blancs and the Vallee de la Marne. Seven of their 75+ separate parcels are farmed biodynamically and certified organic, with the rest organic or sustainably farmed. The Blanc de Blancs come off their chalkiest soils, in Chavot and Epernay, from vines averaging 35 years. It was fermented in small foudres and barrels with light bâtonnage and partial MLF before heading to the bottle for at least 24 months. My bottle was disgorged in July 2021 with zero dosage. Racy and tight, the chalky soils and gently handled grapes swallow up all of the oak, returning it as a gentle, subtle cloak around the zippy, driving acidity ruling the palate. Green apple, lemon blossom, and lemon peel streak the length of this energetic wine, bedded by a generous layer of deep chalk and fine lees. The finish stretches long and saline, kissed with white flowers. A graceful charmer. 93/100 (TR)

Champagne Pierre Gimonnet & Fils Brut Rosé de Blancs NV
Didier, the third generation of the Gimonnet family, oversees the winemaking of their family winery, based in Cuis. This wine, like all of their Chardonnay-centric wines, is laser-focused. According to Didier, he wants a rosé that tastes like a blanc de blancs with colour. “Powerful Chardonnay.” It certainly succeeds. This bottling sources fruit from Cramant, Oger, and Chouilly, adding 5% Bouzy still Pinot Noir. This bottle was disgorged in March 2021. Lively and joyous fresh strawberry raspberry meringue on a tightly wound, chalky base, trailing off with fine salinity. Lovely release and very much in the BdB vein. 93/100 (TR)

Champagne Emmanuel Brochet Le Mont Benoit Extra Brut NV
Emmanuel Brochet sources this mix of 35% Pinot Meunier, 35% Pinot Noir, and 30% Chardonnay from the organically farmed 2.5 hectare plot Le Mont Benoit, in the 1er cru village of Villers-aux-Noeuds, and its calcareous clays. This bottle was based on 2015, with 20% reserve wines. After a native ferment, the base wine rested 11 months in wood before heading to bottle and 2 years sur lattes, with a disgorge around 4 g/L. Savoury and mineral driven, with wild cherry, lemon, laced with bergamot, dried roses, and broken stones across a toasty, expansive palate. There’s an energy and grip that holds this substantial wine taut through a lengthy finish. Gravitas, and elegance = mesmerizing. 94/100 (TR)

Jamie Goode


Champagne Ulysse Collin Les Pierrières Blanc de Blanc Extra Brut NV France
This is bright, saline, pure and linear with a hint of apple, and some subtle wax and toast notes. But overall this is really taut and focused with some saline hints. Very bright, pure and layered, with real length. 96/100


Champagne Berêche et Fils Campania Remensis Rosé 2013 France
12% alcohol. Pinot Meunier from the Montagne de Reims. This was disgorged in March 2017, with a dosage of 3 g/litre. Taut and intense with crisp, focused citrus fruit and a touch of cranberry, showing real precision and a bit of structure. This is very linear and has high acidity, along with admirable purity. 95/100

Champagne Pierre Gimonnet & Fils Vielles Vignes de Chardonnay 2002 France
Labelled Millésime de Collection, this is golden and finely toasty with sweet citrus and pear fruit with some white peach richness. There’s a delicacy to this wine and also freshness. It’s a really nicely balanced Champagne showing real finesse. 95/100

Champagne Suenen Oiry Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Extra Brut NV France
12% alcohol. Biodynamic farming and wild ferment for base wines. Lovely taut aromatics here: lemons, wax, some apple hints. The palate is concentrated with lovely lime, lemon and pear. Very pure and precise with nice tension and real brightness. Some saline hints, too. 95/100

Champagne Charles Heidsieck Vintage Rosé 2008 France
12% alcohol. 15 different Crus (all Grand and Premier Crus), first vintage in the new bottle shape. Pinot Noir (63%) and Chardonnay (37%), with 9% red wine to add colour. This spent 10 years on lees, and was disgorged in January 2021 with a dosage of 7 g/litre. This has a wonderfully complex nose of fine toast, iodine, autumn leaves and strawberries. The palate shows real precision with a lemony core and subtle spicy frills, with some reductive mineral notes adding complexity, and also some cherry and strawberry hints complementing the pink grapefruit and blood orange characters. Such precision to this wine, with focus, freshness and complexity, and a beguiling mineral twist. 95/100

Champagne Bollinger Grande Année 2004 France
This is from a June 2014 disgorgement. Concentrated and intense with lovely apple and pear notes as well as a mineral streak and subtle saline hints, as well as honey and toast. Has a lovely savoury, mineral dimension to it. 95/100

Champagne Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs 2008 France
10 years on lees. Creamy nose with some subtle baby vomit notes as well as honeycomb and butterscotch. The palate is vivid and crystalline, showing intense sweet fruit and fine toastiness. Showing some development, this is serious with generosity and depth. 95/100


Champagne Billecart-Salmon Cuvée Nicolas François 2007 France
12.5% alcohol. This is 79% Grands Crus, 21% Premier Crus. 60% is Pinot Noir from the Montagne de Reims and La Vallée de la Marne, and 40% is Chardonnay from the Côte des Blancs. 15% of the wine is barrel fermented in old oak. Dosage is 6 g/litre, disgorged July 2019. This is a powerful wine with aromas of toast, honey, hazelnut and ripe apple, with some cherry and pear. The palate is bold and full, with honey, toast, bread and spice notes as well as some fresh citrus notes accompanying the rich, peachy fruit. Lots going on here: a real impact wine. 94/100

Champagne Pierre Gimonnet Gastronome 1er Cru 2016 France
12.5% alcohol. This is all from the Côte des Blancs: 43.5% Cramant, 24.5% Chouilly, 2% Oger (all Grands Crus) and 30% Cuis (Premier Cru). Disgorged October 2021, dosage 5 g/litre. This is really stylish: lovely layered citrus fruits with some white peach and honeysuckle notes, as well as subtle bread and toast hints. It’s crystalline and delicate, with concentration but also freshness, and a wonderful purity. There’s a faint creaminess in the background, adding some depth to the fine fruitiness. 94/100

Champagne Bruno Paillard Extra Brut Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru NV France
From 36 plots in Oger and Mesnil-sur-Oger, this spends a minimum of 48 months on lees, and this bottle was disgorged in June 2018. 12% alcohol. Pure and very precise with taut lemony fruit. Lovely acid line here with pristine, slightly chalky lemony notes and a subtle crystalline toasty edge. Amazing intensity here. 94/100

Champagne Hugues Godmé Les Champs Saint Martin Grand Cru 2012 France
100% Pinot Noir from a 1.09 hectare plot in Verzenay planted in 1986, with 8 years on the lees (bottled in 2014, so quite a long elevage for the base wine in oak, then disgorged in May 2022 with no filtration or fining). No dosage. Complex, appley and intense with crystalline citrus fruits, some saline notes and keen acidity. Layered with nice precision, and hints of honey and almond adding a richer, more savoury side. Very fine. 94/100

Champagne Gosset Grand Blanc de Blancs NV France
12% alcohol. Not keen on the clear glass here, but the packaging does look good with the distinctively shaped Gosset bottle. Taut and restrained on the nose with some citrus and green apple character. The palate is concentrated and linear with purity and intensity. Very appealing lemony fruit and a slight grainy texture. Some yellow plum and pear in the mix, as well as roasted almond. Very fine with lovely purity, and a fine saline twist to the finish. 94/100

Emmanuel Brochet Le Mont Benoit Extra Brut NV France
12% alcohol. This is from 2015 with 20% reserve wine. It’s 35% Pinot Meunier, 35% Pinot Noir and 30% Chardonnay from a southeast-facing plot, farmed organically. Wild yeast, unfined, unfiltered. Complex and layered with apple, pear and honey and spice. Vinous with a citrus core and fine spicy notes. Dry and complex with nice weight. 94/100

Champagne Ayala La Perle de Ayala 2012 France
The previous release of this prestige cuvée was 2006. It’s 80% Chardonnay, 20% Pinot Noir, all from Grand Cru villages – Chouilly, Cramant and Mesnil-Sur-Oger for Chardonnay, and Aÿ for Pinot. 6 g/l dosage, 8 years on lees. This is pristine. Very focused with lovely taut lemony fruit and some crystalline citrus notes, as well as a touch of salinity. Very bright and linear, but showing good concentration, and a lovely tapering, expanding finish. There’s a lightness of touch here, with superb balance. 94/100

Champagne Taittinger Les Folies de la Marquetterie NV Frane
Wonderful aromatics with pure citrus fruit complemented by fine toasty aromatics, a touch of nougat and a hint of peach and pear. The palate is linear and focused with a spicy, slightly reductive frill as well as crystalline citrus, some peach and a touch of brioche and honey. Very refined but also showing a lovely restrained richness. This is superb. 94/100

Champagne Taittinger Prélude Grands Crus NV France
12.5% alcohol. This is a 50:50 blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, aged on lees for five years. Very fine and delicate on the nose with taut lemony fruit and a hint of chalkiness. Very focused. The palate is bright and citrus-led, and quite multidimensional with some fine spices, minerals and a touch of saltiness. This is so pure and expressive with real harmony, and just a hint of richness. 94/100

Agrapart & Fils Terroirs Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru NV France
40% reserve wines, disgorged August 2020 after four years on lees. This has a very fine nose with crystalline citrus and subtle toasty notes. The palate is taut and linear with a little salinity. Lovely focused fruit here, showing freshness and poise. A really good Blanc de Blancs. 94/100

Champagne Bruno Paillard Blanc de Blancs Extra Brut 2013 France
From the Grand Cru villages of Oger and Mesnil-sur-Oger. Disgorged in May 2021 after seven years on lees, dosage 4.5 g/litre. Concentrated but delicate and fresh with a pure citrus fruit palate, with some subtle saltiness and a hint of oyster shell. It’s very bright with a lovely transparency across the palate: no sign of heaviness and a lovely acid line, with fine toastiness and the crispness of a cold Autumn morning. Pure lemony fruit runs the show here: serious, assured. 94/100

Champagne Egly-Ouriet Grand Cru Millésime Brut 2008 France
70% Pinot Noir, 30% Chardonnay. Apple, marzipan and honey on the nose, showing some richness. The palate is focused and linear with cherry and almond, as well as fine spiciness. Broad and harmonious with apply richness but also lovely balance and acidity. 94/100

Champagne Tarlant Rosé Zero Brut Nature NV France
50% Chardonnay, 44% Pinot Noir, 6% Pinot Meunier. Base wine 2013 with 25% reserve wines, disgorged January 2019 after 5 years on lees with no dosage. Pale pink. Has a fine, toasty, linear fruity nose. The palate is taut and intense with fine spiciness. Very lively and precise with a nice dryness and some lovely fine toasty hints. Really serious. 94/100

Champagne Gosset Grand Rosé NV France
12% alcohol. This is 50% Chardonnay (a relatively high proportion for a rosé) and 50% Pinot Noir, of which 8% of the blend is red wine from Bouzy and Ambonnay. It spent three years on lees and then was disgorged with an 8 g/l dosage. Orange-pink in colour, this has lovely flavours of strawberry and red cherry with notes of rhubarb and lime, showing some grapefruit pith and mandarin, with subtle notes of nuts, honey and spice adding some warmth. Has lovely crisp acidity: everything pulls together here and the 8 g dosage works in bringing some harmony. 94/100

Treve Ring

Treve Ring is a wine writer and editor, judge and speaker, and perpetual traveller. [She is also Correspondent Anorak.]