Every Friday TheChampagneSommelier will ask 5 questions about 5 coeur de bouteilles to friends and Champagne lovers from near and far. This week we had a bubbly chat with Yoko Bubble !
After spending a little over 15 years in the wine industry working across retail sales in the US, wine judging in the UK, Japan and France, as well as working harvests and cellar jobs in Champagne and Mosel, I have discovered my heart belongs to Grower Champagne or Champagne de Vignerons as French people say. My passion, besides learning and tasting in Champagne, is figuring out fun and approachable ways to communicate all things Champagne by doing things I love such as writing and drawing.
Last year, I have self published a handwritten/hand illustrated book called ‘La Champagne, Le Champagne & Les Champenois – A Handmade Book to Celebrate Handcrafted Champagne’ and I am currently working with my friends to publish an online magazine ‘Grower Champagne & Champagne Grower’.
Which Champagne would You treat your parents or in-laws?
‘Champagne Pascal Agrapart ‘Minéral’ – I was a rebellious troublemaker growing up, so opening something proper and polite like this immaculate Blanc de Blancs to compensate for my past behaviors.’
Which Champagne would You treat your lover?
‘Champagne Geoffroy ‘Les Houtrants Complantés’ made from co-plantation of 5 grape varieties (traditional 3 grapes plus Arbanne and Petit Meslier) 14 years – that was the number of years Jean-Baptiste Geoffroy dedicated from the time of inspiration, planting of vines, making of the wine to the 1st release of this cuvée, which debuted in 2015. If you don’t love and believe in what you do, you can’t have this kind of commitment in order to make a bottle of champagne. And to me, this wine is a priceless art that expresses his passion as a winegrower and winemaker.’
Which Champagne would You treat your boss?
‘Champagne Alexandre Filaine ‘DMY’ – I think of Fabrice Gass, who is behind this wine as my Champagne boss/teacher. He worked at Champagne Bollinger for over 20 years and started his own bottling under Alexandre Filaine label on the side. I have endless respect not only for his winemaking philosophy and craftsmanship, but also for his generosity and kindness to share his knowledge and experiences with others. He is a person who has all the qualities of my ideal big boss, and his wine has all the qualities I look for in a bottle of great wine.’
Which Champagne would You treat yourself?
‘Champagne Huré Frères ‘4 Éléments Meunier’ – I’m a sucker for Meunier because of its ability and versatility to become so many different wines of styles, shades, and personalities. Made from selection massale vines planted in a single site of La Grosse Pierre in the village of Ludes in the Montagne de Reims, this ‘4 Éléments Meunier’ captures this variety’s exciting potential and bright future beautifully and genuinely. It’s such a pleasant wine that speaks to you gently but clearly and stays like a great friend.’
Which Champagne would You treat a dream guest, and why?
‘My crazy wild dream is to have a bottle of Champagne Fallet-Prévostat ‘Blanc de Blancs’ with Mademe Fallet and a bottle of Chamapgne Marie-Nöelle Ledru ‘Cuvée du Goulté’ with Marie-Nöelle on the same table. Their wines are traditional and classic yet have special magic and thrilling energy to make my heart skip a beat every sip. I think it would be fascinating to hear the stories of Champagne from these strong ladies of clear visions and big dreams.’
What piece of music would you listen to drinking wine in question 5?
‘I don’t know much about music but the sound of the never-ending press machine during my 1st Champagne harvest in 2010 stays as one of my favorite tunes. There was something magical and mythical listening to this sound under the full moon shining in the deep navy sky while feeling the crisp fall/autumn air that carried the scent of freshly pressed grapes.’