Lanson is one of the oldest Grande Marque houses in Champagne; this Black Label is currently on special offer at The Co-operative.
Pale sandy yellow in the glass, it foams enthusiastically on pouring, with aromas of white pears, brioche and biscuitiness on the nose.
The palate is complex with ripe pear and crisp apple fruit, a creamy leesiness and freshly-baked bread.
Long on the palate, it is mouthfilling and grippy with good structural underpinnings and a savoury, persistent finish with a muscular food-friendly rasp that is not quite limey nor yet cidery, but somehow a bit of both.
With pure fruit and precise acidity, it feels as powerfully balanced and elegant as a ballerina.
Use the refreshing acidity to cut through the richness of salmon en croute or even a roast chicken with all the festive trimmings.
£31.99 from The Co-operative: reduced to £21.99 until January 1st 2013. Provided for review.
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