n.v. M. Bonnamy, Brut Crémant de Loire, Methode Traditionnelle, Sparkling Wine, Loire Valley, France.
I discovered the Bonnamy Crémants, imported by Sacred Thirst Imports, about a decade ago, and they have been my secret go to for value priced bubbly ever since, along with the Kermit Lynch imported Sommariva Prosecco, both of which are quality hand made products that way over deliver for the price. The crisply bone dry Bonnamy Brut is a cuvée bottling of Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay and even a small dose of non skin contact Cab Franc, which adds zip, complexity and structure to the slightly earthy/stony Chenin and the more plush Chardonnay here in this energy driven Crémant de Loire. The palate revolves around mixed citrus, stone fruit and yeasty notes, it is generous, but saline and steely dry, finishing clean, making for a flexible sparkler to enjoy anytime and anywhere.Two wines in the Crémant de Loire range of M. Bonnamy, this Brut and Brut Rosé are great examples of inexpensive yet delicious sparkling wines. The grapes are predominantly grown on various forms of limestone which include most significantly Tufa (meteogene tavertine), the material widely used in the building of many châteaux throughout the Loire Valley.

Made mainly from traditional Loire varietals, 65% Chenin Blanc, 25% Chardonnay and 15% Cabernet Franc, this Champagne style bubbly from M. Bonnamy comes from various plots in Saumur, Anjou and Touraine most and set on chalky limestone “Tufa” with some clay, which explains the striking mineral intensity and energy, but with enough fruit and less contact to please the palate. I’ve had this wine many times and it has never failed to deliver and I highly recommend it, it will provide good times and smiles each and every time in the glass.The grapes see hand harvesting, with early picks, a gentle pressing and low-temperature fermentation, which the winery says is to better preserve the aromas and clarity here. Second fermentation, they note, is in the bottle, employing the traditional method or Champagne style. This is after the selection of the best lots and the Brut Cuvée is aged the full 12 months, instead of the minimum 9 by the AOC rules and its aging is done completely sur lattes before disgorgement, allowing that extra dimension of yeasty character to develop. The results make this M. Bonnamy Brut one of the world’s greatest values in sparkling wine, it is a great choice for savvy budget buyers that are looking for quality over a name brand, it is perfect for party events, family gatherings and or receptions.
($17 Est.) 90 Points, grapelive

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