I had not tasted the wines of Champagne Lombard before, but after going through some of their wines recently, I am now a fan.
Stylistically, these Champagnes generally have a lower dosage (or none at all), and a dry, zesty, bracing appeal. The house makes about 15 different cuvees, and I only tasted six, and was especially wowed by the single-vineyard wines.
The house sources grapes from more than 100 hectares of vineyards. They get Chardonnay from Grand Crus Mesnil-sur-Oger, Chouilly, Avize and Cramant, along with various Premier Cru villages, while the Pinot Noir is sourced largely from the east of the Montagne de Reims. The Grand Cru wines are aged at least 48-60 months before being disgorged, the Premier Cru a bit less.
The house can trace its roots back to Robert Andrieu (grandfather of the current owner), who founded the Société Anonyme de Magenta-Epernay in 1925. Phillipe Lombard took over in 1960 and expanded the winery and cellars in Epernay in 1987. The company is now run by Thierry Lombard.
The Premier Crus are really solid, and a great introduction to the house’s style, while the Grand Crus offer a whole lot of personality and depth. These wines were received as trade samples and tasted sighted.
N.V. Lombard & Cie Champagne Rosé Premier Cru Brut- France, Champagne
Rich salmon color. Aromas show fresh red cherries, strawberries, red apples, and a floral burst of rose and magnolia petals, over some chalky, biscuity notes. Focused, dry and fresh but concentrated but tart red fruits (strawberries, red apples). Musky-floral complexity mixes with a spiced tea and herbal note, and some chalk and bread crumbs. Deep and concentrated yet fresh. An even split between Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, but 10% of the Pinot Noir is Grand Cru Verzenay fruit vinified as still red wine. Disgorged April 2017. (90 points)
N.V. Lombard & Cie Champagne Blanc de Noirs Premier Cru Extra Brut- France, Champagne, Champagne Premier Cru
Light gold color. Lovely aromas of lemon, quince, apricot, wild strawberries, along with chalk, saline, musky cologne and fresh biscuits. Dry, bracing, precise, with tart lemon, orange pith, apricot pit, along with loads of briskness, saltiness and mineral qualities. Crushed shells, ocean spray, white tea, musky cologne, fresh bread dough. Complex, intense, lots of depth here. All Pinot Noir from Montagne de Reims, this was disgorged in October 2016. (90 points)
N.V. Lombard & Cie Champagne Grand Cru Verzenay Brut Nature- France, Champagne, Champagne Grand Cru
Light gold color. Wow, aromatically, this bursts with perfume, flowers, tart green apples, lemons, some strawberries, complex, evolving minerals, salty, shells, chalk dust. Brisk, dry, almost bracing, but lots of depth, too. Lemon, green apples, apricots, with a complex host of chalky, saline-infused, shell-crushed goodness. Almost austere if not for the depth of dough, honey and floral complexities. Pretty, deep, bracing stuff. 80% Pinot Noir, 20% Chardonnay, aged 48-60 months before disgorgement (this was disgorged June 2017). (92 points)
N.V. Lombard & Cie Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Brut Nature- France, Champagne, Champagne Grand Cru
Deep yellow color. So bright on the nose, with daisies, honeysuckle and orange blossom, with lots of chalks and sea salt, limestone dust, on top of lemon curd and apples. On the palate, pristine acidity, a bracing and dry appeal, with lots of up-front minerals, chalk and limestone dusty, mountain streams. Bright lemons and limes and green apples mix with complex ginger, sea salt, floral perfume and freshly-baked biscuits. Lots of depth but so lively. A blend of Chardonnay from Mesnil-sur-Oger, Chouilly, Avize, and Cramant, this was disgorged in June 2017. (92 points)
N.V. Lombard & Cie Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Mesnil-sur-Oger Brut Nature- France, Champagne, Champagne Grand Cru
Light gold color. Aromas shows rich biscuits and bread crumbs, but lots of dusty minerals, like a fine powder of sea salt, limestone, chalk and crushed shells, along with flowers, raw almond, honey, all on top of lemon curd goodness. Precise and focused on the palate with zesty acidity but a lovely depth and richness of texture. Lemon, yellow pears, lime, apricot, this is racy and complex with intermingled flavors of bread crumbs, sea salt, crushed shells, mountain stream, salted almonds. Really, really, good, this is bracing yet packed with depth and flavor. (93 points)
2008 Lombard & Cie Grand Cru Brut Nature- France, Champagne, Champagne Grand Cru
Light gold color. Toasty, salty, deep, complex aromatics, with wildflowers, lemon curd, wild strawberry, shaved ginger, crushed sea shells, a ton going on. So precise and dry on the palate but packed with flavor. Lemons, limes, green apples, topped with bread crumbs, cheese rind and candle wax. Complex elements of saline, limestone, honeysuckle and minerals. Young, deep concentrated, a long life ahead but this is already elegant and beautiful. 80% Chardonnay (from Mesnil-sur-Oger and Avize) and 20% Pinot Noir (from Ambonnay), this is aged 84 months in bottle and disgorged in May 2017. Long life ahead. (93 points)