Larmandier-Bernier is one of the finest estates in the Côte des Blancs, producing wines of unusual detail and clarity of expression. The style is for champagnes that are dry, minerally and terroir-driven, emphasizing purity and finesse over richness or sheer power… PETER LIEM

As I've written before, Larmandier-Bernier numbers among the Côte de Blanc's—and Champagne's—finest estates. Based in Vertus, the Larmandier family farms organically and harvest late, vinifying the resulting wines in wood. The result is vinous, elegantly muscular Champagnes that are concentrated but precise. In a region that still produces far too many meager, brittle wines, Larmander-Bernier reminds us of the plenitude and texture of which great Champagne is capable…WILLIAM KELLEY

The Larmandier-Bernier wines are marked by a feeling of textural intensity and vinous resonance that is quite distinctive. The wines are fermented in wood, mostly larger format foudre with some smaller barrels, with spontaneous fermentations and generally minimal handling. Dosage is on the low side. In recent years, the style here has shifted towards a greater focus on energy and tension than in the past, likely a reflection of a generational change being led by Pierre and Sophie Larmandier’s sons Arthur and Georges. The wines remain compelling. ANTONIO GALLONI

This longterm house in Vertus has the virtue of owning vines not only there but in most of the Cotes de Blancs’s best villages including Cramant and Avize. Pierre and Sophie Larmandier have guided it with impeccable farming; including organics since 1990 and biodynamics since 1999…these are beautiful nuanced takes on chardonnay in its various guises…JON BONNE, The New French Wine


The champagnes of Larmandier-Bernier are built around precision and purity. They’re minerally conduits of their soils and their ability to eloquently portray their terroir is captivating.

I still remember one of my first encounters with this Champagne house. It was at a tasting in an Italian castle just south of Turin in 2005. Yes it all sounds whimsical and fairytale-esque, but I vividly recall the minerally infused Champagnes and their raw beauty, wrapped in satiny waves of bubbles. They were utterly original, compelling and so incredibly delicious. They were telling another story about Champagne, a story that few had told before them.

These are not overly-constructed wines. Fanatical vineyard work (no herbicides, pesticides or fungicides are used) produces crystalline fruit. They tend to pick their fruit with lovely ripeness and flavour to avoid adding too much dosage at the finish. This avoids a clunky sweetness addition and relies on the fruit brilliance and clarity, a common feature of their wines.

They farm 16 hectares across 50 parcels, the majority of their vines come from around Vertus with smaller plots within the Grand Cru villages of Cramant, Chouilly, Avize and Oger. They farm a treasure trove of older vines, some reaching 80 years of age.

Both the Latitude and Longitude are non-vintage wines, with the base mainly coming from 2020 -  which Pierre Larmandier describes as ‘a near perfect vintage.’ Latitude exudes a touch more breadth and voluptuousness than the racy and satiny Longtitude. These vintage centric bubbles offer incredible value at $125 and $150 each in 6 pack buys.

The rest of the new releases are vintage wines; Terre de Vertus Blanc de Blancs is lithely and frenetic showing its cooler 16 vintage personality, Vieille Vigne du Levant is a chalky and pitch-perfect BDB from the cooler 13 vintage in Cramant, while Les Chemins d’Avize exudes the power of both the revered village of Avize and the 2015 vintage. There’s also a new cuvee, 1er Cru Blanc de Noirs 2015 from a selection of riper grapes once destined for the rose.

Due to their pent-up power and highly strung natures, all these Champagnes can benefit from short to medium-term cellaring. A few years would calm their nerves – saying that if you like the more frenetic side of Champagne then no need to wait.

These are the sharpest prices in town, stock up now for the approaching months. As you can imagine this estate is a drop in the Champagne ocean, these are limited - we're down to the last dozen on some.


Gabrielle Poy