Don't Apologize For Liking No/Low Dose Champagne

There are voices and opinions out there in the wine world that say if you like these kinds of champagnes, if they appeal to you, then you might be caught in a trend. Either the trend that it’s cool to make these wines or you’re trendy to like them. Fah. I even saw it in the recent Skurnick catalog, although credit given to them for at least giving folks like me the legitimate out to like these low/no dosage champagnes, provided we don’t like sweet foods either, which I do not. it’s perfectly fine to like things that are energetic, with some edge and I generally do not like high dosage wines. The exception is Vilmart, as Laurent Champs can make wines with moderate dosage, but he is a master of balance. Aside from that, I tend to like champagnes in the 0-5 g/l range, and yes, dosage is about context and so there are some champagnes that get out of balance with lower dosage, yet I find the wines of Marie-Courtin, Benoit Marguet and the Hugues Godme EB cuvee, to be delicious, with fruit signature, balance and expression of energy. These are wines I buy, cellar, enjoy and stand up for.

So, my plea is don’t apologize for liking low/no dosage champagnes, and don’t let the world of wine force yet another expectation on what you ‘should’ like and shame you when you don’t follow the guidance of what is supposed to be right.

  • NV Hugues Godmé Champagne Premier Cru Extra-Brut - France, Champagne, Champagne Premier Cru (8/3/2018)
    This was a bottle I brought back from Godme during our visit 2 months ago. This bottle has a disgorge date of 01/2018, whereas that last bottle was from shiner. 60% Chard, 30% PM, 10% PN. I also don’t know the dosage here but have to assume it is the same as the winery poured shiner, so around 3 g/l? Man, the wine last night was laser beamed–acidity and saline, with some fruit rounding it out of lemon and green apple but it was chocked with acidity. Will retry tonight and see if it changes but if this bottle is like the others out there now on the market (same disgorge date), make sure you pair it with something more fatty so that the acidity has a backdrop to complement…as a little update, this has been opened 2 days, but I kept it shut under a champagne stopper and it held the bubbles just fine. I did pair today’s glass with some cheese, and as I expected, the wine does lovely in the presence of the cheese’s flavor. Still, there is plenty of spine and I don’t apologize for liking low to no dosage wines, as I prefer them–and if you like wines in this style, don’t apologize for them either. Lemon, a touch of honey now in the wine, with some juicy green apple and the same saline component. Delicious.

Posted from CellarTracker

Hey, thanks for the opportunity to not apologize, something like this rarely comes along! (Seriously)

(excellent note, thanks!)

I have enjoyed no dosage Champagne since I sprung for a case of NV Jean Laurent Dosage Zero in 2004, so I hope this qualifies me as at least a pre-trender… I like all sorts of wine, and amongst Champagne I often enjoy pinot meunier-based and rose with a bit of added sugar, but for straight “Champagne blend” and BdB, my favorites are no dosage; no dosage Recaredo Cava is fabulous as well. If trendiness is not a legitimate validation, it should not be an excluder either, IMO.

Steve, go out and find some of the Mousse Mon Village, which is a no dose Pinot Meunier, farmed cleanly by Cedric Mousse. I have had a couple bottles of it and it’s delicious. Mousse is making some great stuff from PM and he is going to keep getting better too.

Steve…this: N.V. Moussé Fils Champagne Blanc de Meuniers Premier Cru Brut Zéro Les Vignes de Mon Village, France, Champagne - CellarTracker!

Agree certainly with your sentiment on standing up for your own taste buds, FMIII.

I’ve only had one zero that I’m aware of. That was last year. Heather–of course–was the one who had us try it.

Varnier Fanniere NV Grand Cru Rose Zero yes indeed, zero dosage. Well, Heather warned that these kind of wines, you have to leave them age for a long time. I can certainly believe that, as this is all structure right now. Blind, I’d be hard-pressed to identify it as a rose, yet at the same time there were currant underpinnings to this quaff as well. Sure is lively. Very lively.

That’s for the recommendation, just ordered some, though i don’t expect to see it until it is much cooler (based on CT inventory, looks like just you and me)

0-5 g/l is my sweet spot(or not so sweet spot), too. No apologies necessary for liking what you like.

That’s what I kept telling the cops, but they had a different view.

Love them all, really, unless they are actually sweet.

Steve, a few more. Marquet: 2013 Marguet Champagne Grand Cru Chouilly, France, Champagne, Champagne Grand Cru - CellarTracker! , 2012 Marguet Champagne Grand Cru Ambonnay Rosé, France, Champagne, Champagne Grand Cru - CellarTracker! And, Marie-Courtin: 2013 Marie Courtin Champagne Efflorescence Extra Brut, France, Champagne - CellarTracker! , 2013 Marie Courtin Champagne Concordance Extra Brut, France, Champagne - CellarTracker!

These are zero dose that work well for me.

Tho the no dosage critics are a bit out of date, no dosage Champagnes these days are quite different than the ones, the few, made 20 years ago, due to climate change. Back then, they were be a bit unbalanced towards structure (or a lot) and I suspect is why some still view them with suspicion.

An interesting comment, because one of the very regular criticisms of no/low dosage champagne is that it doesn’t age (or rather doesn’t age well).

I found that surprising (not that I have personal experience), because the addition of the dosage doesn’t feel like it should magically transform a wine from being DYA to being ageworthy.

Not that I’m likely to ever to drink enough to make my own mind up on this, but I’m intrigued by this, so very interested in hearing people’s views / experience.

Well, had the 2006 Comtes and the 2012 Marie-Courtin Efflorescence last night (which is zero dose) and again, the M-C was better. The Comtes, while I like the finish and the clean impression it leaves, I cannot get past the perceived sweetness, like a 7-Up quality that I get from it. I find none of that on the M-C wine, and I will gladly take a glass of the M-C stuff over Comtes now. I wouldn’t have said this 2 years ago but the more I drink wines like M-C and the others, the more I don’t miss wines like Comtes and the like.

Interesting, but a bit strange, thread to me. We should all enjoy whatever we want to, without apologies necessary - whether it be white zin or Jura whites :slight_smile:

I will agree with Eric that the ‘evolution’ of no or low dosage champers has meant that these are now made in a more ‘balanced’ way than before.

The comment about ‘needing time to develop’ is not that surprising - one would think that with a no dosage situation, the acidity will be relatively ‘bracing’ and, with time in bottle, this will mellow a bit and other characteristics will begin to become more prominent, making a more ‘balanced’ wine - no different than a wonderful Grosset Polish Hill Riesling . . .

Enjoy what you want to enjoy folks . . . always!


I consider myself lucky to like both styles. I drink and enjoy a lot of low- or non- dosage wine, but not exclusively. I’m a fan of the Taittinger Comte; I think the '06 was dosed at 9 g/l. Vilmart’s Coeur de Cuvée has 8 g/l. Vive la différence!

I don’t like no-dose Champagne. So, I’m ahead of the next trend…? :wink:

Frank, you know I’m a fan of low and no dosage bubbly, but the key word in this discussion IMHO is the one you used, BALANCE. I’ve had many a champagne that had 8-10 g/l dosage and did not notice the sweetness. And, I’ve had many that had less dosage and felt they were too sweet. Nonetheless, I love good balanced wines.

I’ve enjoyed numerous no dosage champagnes over the recent years and can recall a few:

MV Bérèche & Fils Extra Brut Réserve
NV Georges Laval Brut Nature
NV Benoît Lahaye Brut Nature
NV Paul Goerg Cuvée Absolu Extra Brut
NV Ayala Brut Nature- tasted in the winery with then Pres. Herve Augustin]
NV Tarlant Brut Zero
NV Pierre Gimonnet et Fils Zero Dosage Champagne
2009 [now- they came out with the 2006] Louis Roederer Brut Nature Millesimé Elaboré Champagne Philippe Starck
NV Laurent-Perrier Extra [Ultra] Brut
NV Pol Roger Extra Brut
NV Cattier Absolu Extra Brut
NV Larmandier-Bernier Terre de Vertus

Brad Baker has said this before, and I’ve found it to be true.


Don’t disagree, as balance is key for me, too. I recall some Georges Laval I had a few years back that I found too lean and lacking. I stopped buying any more Laval because of that. But, I have yet to really have that kind of experience of poor balance with the wines I mentioned earlier in the thread. Benoit Marguet and Dominique Moreau, as well as Cedric Mousse, seem to have their approach dialed in pretty well and I don’t see balance issues with their wines.

Amen! Preference-shaming is inherently ridiculous. Frank, do your preferences move about (a bit?) (at all?) as we change the Age Factor? Do you like higher-dosage sparklers more with some age than without? And do you like low-dosage sparklers less with age than without? Do you even like your sparklers aged?

I think I had that Laval too! It was highly recommended by a salesman at a store in Beaver Creek, Co. I hated it, and it was pricey too! Luckily, they had a Saves Rose with which I rinsed my displeasure away.



Screw the dosage argument.

It’s about the balance of a specific wine.