2019 Maison Bonnard Bugey Montagnieu, Extra Brut, Savoie, France


Notes of stone fruit, bitter almond, white flower, and lemon peel

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95% Chardonnay, 5% Altesse. 

This fresh and fruit-driven sparkling wine comes from steep hillside vineyards rooted in clay-limestone soils. All vineyard and cellar work are done in coherence with nature, so as to let the land speak through each bottle produced. Montagnieu Brut is the perfect apéritif wine and is perfect for serving before (or even throughout) a large meal. Hand harvested. Spends 3 years in the domaine's cellars.


Maison Bonnard produces a range of exceptional still and sparkling wines from the Bugey, a wild alpine region nestled between Lyon and the Alps. Their 16 hectares of organic vineyards are concentrated in the hamlet of Crept, with an inspiring view over the surrounding landscape. The heart of the domaine is a single 11-hectare vineyard that wraps around the hillside, where the local varieties Mondeuse, Altesse, Chardonnay, and Jacquère are planted at an incredibly steep 40 to 70% slope. This vineyard is supplemented with a few smaller vineyards of Chardonnay cultivated lower in the village or on the surrounding hillsides.

Romain Bonnard and his siblings Anne-Sophie and Jean-Christophe recently took over the domaine from their father and uncle, who had established and run the estate since 1988, and have farmed organically since the early 2000s. Their main production has long been the Montagnieu Brut, a local crémant made predominantly from Chardonnay, aged for a minimum of four years on the lees chez Bonnard. Romain has been particularly passionate about increasing the production of still wines, which have been a resounding success.

While the work in the local vineyards is backbreaking, the cellar is set up to be simple and efficient. Vinification is done in old steel tanks with no added yeast, and the still wines are aged in tank or used barrels depending on the cuvée. For the sparkling, everything is done in house, from vinification to riddling to disgorgement. Whether it’s a visit to the domaine or popping open one of their excellent bottles, Bonnard is an inspiring reminder of a passionate farmer producing exceptional wines that simply lend themselves to pleasurable drinking.


Grape(s) Chardonnay, Altesse
Farming Organic