If I had to describe the new release of Piper Heidsieck Essentiel in one word, it would be: WOW! This Champagne absolutely blew me away for a number of reasons that I will quickly summarize for you here. First of all, for a big house mark that usually attempts to cater to the broadest possible palate, this wine is clearly directed towards true Champagne aficionados. It's dry as a bone with an electricity you can feel in your fillings, and a minerality that is so saline you'll be wondering if they fermented the wine with fresh oysters in the tank. This is a Champagne for pairing with hard, nutty cheeses like an aged Parmesan, or the saltiest, briniest seafood you can find. Think Fino Sherry meets Champagne, yet with an elegance and restraint. Made with 45% Pinot Noir and 36% Pinot Meunier, the red fruits add a savoriness and weight that is immediately felt on the palate, but they quickly transition into that 19% of electric Chardonnay that you can sense in every pore of your mouth for a good three minutes after each sip. Aged in bottle since 2017 and with 23% reserve wines, the complexity of this wine is fascinating. But, again, the real shocker for me is the risk taken by one of Champagne's most renowned houses. Bravo to the team at Piper Heidsieck for shifting both the momentum and the conversation back to the brand labels. The new Essentiel is easily in my top 10 wines of 2022.
-David Driscoll, Mission Sales Director