All of the wines are currently fermented in enamel-lined steel tanks, but after fermentation, they may go into steel tanks, oak barrels, or a combination as they age. Steel is by far the most popular vessel used, but Hervé is experimenting more with oak to see how it affects his wines. All of the Bouzy Rouge is stored in oak as are some of the reserve wines, some of the Chardonnay, and a
small amount of Pinot Noir.
As with most producers,
hand-riddling of the Millésime and the high-end Brut Prestige and Cuvée Anaïs Jolie Coeur is standard practice.
If you haven’t heard of the Cuvée Anaïs Jolie Coeur, it has just debuted with the 2004 vintage. Named after Hervé’s great-grandmother who helped start the family business, this wine is a departure from the rest of the range in that it is the first attempt to make a 100% oaked wine. Before this wine was created, oak use was limited to reserve wines and some Chardonnay. With the Cuvée Anaïs Jolie Coeur, made up of 90% Pinot Noir, a very different expression of the domaine has been achieved. This is not only due to the oak, but also the high Pinot Noir content, which is greater than anything else Camille Savès makes. This is definitely a wine worth seeking out, but production is quite limited (only 1,000 bottles).
Camille Savès manages around 10 ha of vineyards spread out over a number of villages on or surrounding the southern slope of the Montange de Reims. Their largest holdings are in their hometown of Bouzy where they own 6 ha. The other villages in which they own land are the nearby Montagne de Reims villages of Bouzy and
Tauxières, and the Marne Valley village Marne, which is situated right where the Reims region ends and the Marne Valley
of Tours-sur- Montagne de
Pinot their They
Noir and Chardonnay are grown, and across all of holdings the vines average thirty-five years of age. produce about eighty to eighty-five thousand bottles
that is grown is exception: Bouzy
utilized in Rouge (the
still Pinot Noir wine used as red wine for some of the best in
from Bouzy) is in high demand to be Rosé Champagnes, and Hervé makes the village. As such, he sells off a
small amount to a few for their high quality Billecart-Salmon.
producers who, naturally, are known Rosés: Alfred Gratien, Gosset, and
To me, the wines of Camille Savès are all about minerality and fresh, biscuit-laced red fruit. The lack of malolactic fermentation gives the wines an extra dimension of citrus and minerality that deftly cuts through the fruit - this gives the wines amazing finesse while still maintaing an underlying fruity power. This isn’t an easy combination to pull off, as it is much easier to go too far to one side or the other and wind up with a wine that is too blousy or too sharp. In the United States, their Rosé is the most popular wine in the range. In fact, Hervé says they could produce twice as much Rosé, ship it all to the United States, and still not satisfy demand (if you have had this wine, you probably can understand why). Along with Henri Billiot’s and Billecart-Salmon’s NV Rosés, this is one of the benchmarks for what an affordable Champagne Rosé can and should be. Release after release, Savès’ Rosé is a winner and is highly recommended - it simply over- performs for its price point. Another personal favorite in
Special Web Sample Edition - October 2010