Brutal Maximal Belge - Chardonnay 2022
This year's BRUTAL is a 100% Chardonnay made by the Optimbulles wine estate in oak barrels in 2018. A sparkling wine that did its half fermentation in the bottle as an experiment. Because the fermentation stopped during secondary fermentation, the wine still has a little residual sugar. The wine therefore has an alcohol content of 13.5% so be careful ;-)
But also because of that this wine has both the acidity of the Chardonnay and the nice round character of the oak which makes it actually a complete and beautiful appetizer.
! OPEN CAREFULLY ! When the crown cap is opened, with a 1 second delay, a "lees cap" comes out of the bottle with it.
And for those who don't know what a Brutal wine is, you can find a full recap below:
What is a Brutal Wine?
Brutal Wines have zero added sulphur hence the Limburg wolf 🐺 that eats the sulfites (SO2) and the winemaker must not interfere with the wine in the entire process. It has gotten a reputation as one of the most bizarre wines out there, but it is really just a pure natural wine with the purest grapes. In this case the wines were waaaay too explosive at first. So it had to be manually openened and capped again, which took great effort.
The Brutal Wines are seen as an experiment by the winemaker. They are pretty rare since it usually is a once in a lifetime experiment, and therefor highly-sought after and have a certain cult style in the natural wine scene.
Brutal Maximal Belge?
Well, at first glance the name speaks for itself. It's a "100% Belgian Brutal" created and designed in this country. But the "Maximal" is also a reference to the actual creator of the wine, who is called Maxime. Owner of Belgian wine domain Optimbulles, and such a nice guy. Please do pay them a visit. They have the most beautifull domain and offer great tastings.
Should you have missed the opportunity to buy one of these lovely wines: not to worry. A next - different - Belgian Brutal is always in the making. When? We don't know. But we'll let you know. For sure ;)