Gosset's 1998 prestige cuvée: an abundance of fruits and maturity
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The Gosset family have been producing Champagne from the Aÿ vineyards since 1584, making them one of the oldest Champagne producers, if not THE oldest in existence today. This very small producer is run by descendants Michael and Christian Gosset who today manage around 24 acres of vineyards. Within the 24 acres are 14 acres which lie on the best hillsides of Aÿ in the Lieux-dits of Asniers, Froide Terre, Croix Courcelle and Loiselu. A further 8.5 acres are scattered across the Premier Crus of Mareuil, Dizy and Avenay. Finally a tiny half acre plot of Grand Cru Chouilly (Chardonnay) helps to create the distinctive Gosset Champagne. Since 1994 it has been owned by the Cognac house, Frapin and Jean Pierre Cointreau is currently CEO of both companies.
Gosset has some rather famous neighbours, including Bollinger whose winery is located directly opposite. However, production is much below that of the larger houses, at around 1.3 million bottles, where as Moët et Chandon are nearing 30 million.
The house has many long-standing contracts spanning generations and together, over time, both parties have developed a model of working together that produces the best possible product. With this in mind, the growers manage their vines as they see best with Gosset managing the logistics of collection and delivery to the winery, ensuring the grapes are pressed as soon as possible after harvest. All villages are delivered and processed separately with the majority of the Chardonnay coming from sites in the Côtes des Blancs.
All Gosset champagnes are 'recently disgorged', normally with a high proportion of Chardonnay and without malolactic fermentation. This preserves acidity which in turn keeps the wine fresh for much longer. The Gosset style is very creamy, dry but not acidic, full, biscuity, and yeasty. Today the wines are presented in an antique bottle, an exact replica of the one used since the eighteenth century by Champagne Gosset.