John McIlwain :
"Côte de Béchalin (formerly known as La Parcelle when part of the Inflorescence lineup) comes from a meticulously farmed .73 hectare parcel in Celles-sur-Ource. Where previously Bouchard sold wines made by the former owner,he later vinified the wines in those cellars. 2007 was the first vintage where the wines were made completely in Bouchard's cellars. While these champagnes have seemed to have a broader palate with more exotic fruit, they maintain poise with pinpoint acidity. One can certainly enjoy this now, but some time in the cellar to further knit the elements of structure and fruit should pay off handsomely. "
Bouchard was born into a winegrowing family, but he only discovered a passion for his métier while working as a caviste—or wine merchant—in Paris. Returning to his hometown in the late 1990s, he began his tiny domaine when his father gifted him just under one hectare of Pinot Noir vines in lieu-dit Les Ursules. “I was delighted at the time, but Les Ursules is north-facing, and it really isn’t easy to ripen grapes, so in retrospect it was something of a poisoned chalice.” he laughs.
The 2000 vintage was Bouchard’s first, and from the beginning, his approach has challenged almost all the precepts of conventional Champagne. In a region dominated by blends, all his wines derive from a single vineyard, a single grape variety and a single vintage.
Intervention is minimal: Ambient microflora are responsible for both alcoholic and malolactic fermentation, and Bouchard has only racked a wine twice in his career. When the wines are bottled, Bouchard adds less sugar than most producers, resulting in lower pressure inside the bottle, and encourages a leisurely prise de mousse of some three months.
Cedric BOUCHARD, Roses de Jeanne, Cote de Bechalin 2013