NV Diebolt-Vallois Cuvée Prestige Blanc de Blancs Brut
Expert Ratings
ST 93+ points
WS 93 points
(Read the full reviews below)
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4.54 stars out of 5!
Member Reviews:

Cuvee Prestige is a well rounded wine. This is among my top 5 lifetime wine experiences.
-- Lou from Villanova, PA

Fabulous Champagne
One of the best bottles of Champagne I've had. We had this to celebrate a big event and could not have chosen much better. Went well with a light meal and was just as good on its own later. Had a small piece of Delice de Bourgone cheese, which was a perfect match to finish dinner.
-- Robert from Wilmington, DE

Thanks for the great recommendation. It is worth the extra money over the blanc de blanc for that special occasion. Laser-like wine. Just fantastic.
-- Graham from Seattle, WA

Great Anniversary Bottle
This Champagne was the centerpiece for my 25th wedding anniversary celebration. Clean and delicious with excellent fruit and finish. Apple notes.
-- Duane from Bernardsville, NJ

The best champagne I have ever had. Worth every penny.
-- Don from Riegelsville, PA

93+ pts: Outpointing Dom Pérignon and Veuve Clicquot Grande Dame

In 1983, we booked a trip to France. Our combined salaries were barely 50k, but this was the chance of a lifetime. We spent a month studying Gault et Millau and the Michelin Guide, and then made a half-dozen lunch reservations. We were poor in NYC, but with eight Francs to the dollar, Paris looked like a bargain.

Over prix fixe 5-course déjeuners at Taillevent in Paris, L'Auberge de I'ill in Illhaeusern, and Restaurant Bardet in Tours, we stuffed ourselves with foie gras, magret de canard and crème brûlée. But even as we loosened our belts a notch over espresso and cognac, we never let go of each establishment's carte des vins.

At Restaurant Taillevent, we discovered the honeysuckle minerality of André Bonhomme Viré-Clessé. At Jean Bardet in Tours, we were introduced to the Vouvrays of Domaine Huet. In Illhaeusern, sommelier Serge Dubs took our breath away when he paired seared foie gras with Zind-Humbrecht's richly-textured Pinot Gris Rangen de Thann SGN.

But perhaps the most astonishing discovery of our 10-day olfactory adventure was a little-known Champagne drawn from the Grand Cru hillsides above Cramant. At Marc Meneau's 3-star restaurant in Vézelay we were greeted with crystal flutes filled with Diebolt-Vallois Blanc de Blancs. The sommelier described this signature Champagne unforgettably: "When you drink le Champagne de Jacques Diebolt, it's not as if you are drinking Champagne. It's more like you're drinking Meursault Perrières — but with bubbles!"

On previous visits to Champagne, we'd visited the labyrinthine cellars of Moët et Chandon, Veuve Clicquot, Roederer and Taittinger. These weren't so much tastings as tours, directed by stunning hostesses clad in Gucci and Hermès, doused with Dior perfume. But after Meneau made the introduction, and we pulled into Cramant for the first time, we soon realized why so many Michelin stars had adopted Diebolt-Vallois as their own.

For three hours on that unforgettable afternoon, three stories beneath Rue Neuve, the effervescent Jacques Diebolt popped corks. The Champagnes were dazzling, infused with chiseled Chardonnay purity. By 3 p.m., we'd shifted from the formal "vous" to the more familiar "tu." Jacques, sensing the moment was right, took us back in time, uncorking a half-dozen bottles, all vinified by his grandfather in the 1950s!

Thirty years later, much has changed on Rue Neuve in Champagne. Jacques and Nadine Diebolt's daughter and son have joined them at the domaine. The estate has grown from 15 acres to over 30. The last 2 hectares were Grand Cru purchases in Cuis and Mesnil. The land grab would set the Diebolts back a cool $4,000,000. Over lunch at Four Seasons George V in December — where "
Cuvée Prestige" has been the featured Champagne for years — Jacques openly confided: "The family will be in debt for 100 years. It's crazy. But that's the life we chose."

Over dessert at George V, sommelier Eric Beaumard — former #1 Sommelier in Europe — told us that the Four Seasons Paris sells 70,000 bottles of wine per year, 24,000 of which are Champagne. Of those, 4,000 are Diebolt "
Cuvée Prestige." More than Dom Pérignon, Clicquot Grand Dame, Krug Clos du Mesnil or Salon. Go figure.

Diebolt-Vallois Blanc de Blancs "
Cuvée Prestige" is entirely drawn from the steep Grand Cru Chardonnay hillsides above Cramant, Cuis and Mesnil. Ten minutes after the Champagne is poured, bubbles are tiny and perfectly persistent. Brilliant green-straw in color with piercing aromas of ripe citrus, apricot pit and honey. Unusually rich — utterly Meursault-like — the attack is filled with luscious lemon tart and lime-zest purity, all braced by riveting limestone backbone.

93+ points from the toughest Champagne critic on the planet, Stephen Tanzer. 93 more from Wine Spectator.

Tasting Notes

NV Diebolt-Vallois Cuvée Prestige Blanc de Blancs Brut
"A very young blanc de blancs with exceptional inner-mouth energy. Powerfully lemony, very long finish shows superb perfume and cut."
93+ points -- Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar

"This tightly knit Champagne brings something more with each sip, and a hint of peach leads first to ripe apple and quince flavors, then papaya, nut, lemon meringue, ginger, licorice and grated coconut notes. This is very focused, with racy acidity and fine texture throughout. Drink now through 2018."
93 points -- Wine Spectator

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