2021 brought champagne a difficult harvest and changes to century-old growing rules to help battle climate change. It saw the end of the Louis Roederer Brut Premier NV and the rise of still wines produced in Champagne. Lady Gaga graced bottles of Dom and Idris Elba and Brad Pitt invested in their own champagne brands (I’ll drink to that!). We heard reports of festive season champagne shortage at the same time as the CIVC officially reported a return to pre-pandemic export volumes. I think it is about time the French move forward. Being stuck in tradition is one thing, but the inability to adapt is unforgiveable!
Are you looking for an everyday type of bubbly? How about this?
A true classic backed by 150 years of history, Pol Roger is the bubbly preferred by the Queen of England (yep, Lilibet herself) and the world over for what Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate calls “full-bodied richness and remarkable finesse.” You just can’t go wrong with this stuff … just ask the 70,000+ Vivino users who have rated it a 4.3 ★ winery overall! 👉 4.2 ★ (from 28,000+ ratings! 👉 “Pol Roger continues to deliver some of the top values in Champagne.” – Wine Advocate 👉 (5.0 ★): “My absolute favourite NV champagne…. I would love to drink it every day. Lovely yeasty, biscuit taste. Slightly sweet, soft acid, really nice fruit. It’s like eating an apple sherbet toast..” – Vivino user Con F. 👉 Compare to Bollinger Special Cuvee Champagne ($20+ more a bottle) James Suckling: “This has impressively energetic style with bold lemon, peach and berry aromas, in quite pure mode. The palate delivers a boldly vinous impression with a succulent drive of citrus and hazelnut flavors. Drink now.” I would agree, Pol Roger is a very under the royal radar bubbly!!!!
Move over Dom. Sit down Ace of Spades. The Champagne star of the Grammys, the bubbly flowing during New Zealand Fashion Week, and in the locker rooms of the Vegas Golden Knights and L.A. Dodgers is none other than this Beau Joie—endorsed by Grammy-winning DJ Tiësto, and produced by longtime Épernay legend Bertrand Senecourt. A blend of 50% Pinot Noir and 50% Chardonnay, it’s a rosé Champagne “for a very special occasion,” says Vivino fan Peter E., “Light crisp taste, yet fruity with lots of strawberry,” “ A 50/50 blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay The bottle is wrapped in a 100% Copper, Suit of Armor inspired by the Armor worn by the knights once protecting the ‘kingdom’.” The bottle is quite attractive as well!
Would you pay $57,000 for a single bottle of Perrier Jouët Champagne vintage 1874, setting a new record for the most expensive Champagne sold during Christie’s “Finest and Rarest Wine & Spirits” auction in London. The price paid for a bottle of 1874 Perrier Jouët had previously set a record when that same vintage was sold at Christie’s in 1888 a title which it held, amazingly enough, for 79 year. Never!
Meanwhile, the more affordable Cava has taken of: A 63% increase in the sales of Cava—Spanish sparkling wine made by the traditional method—in the U.S. over the last nine months. The U.S. is now the second-largest market for Cava in the world. Cava’s international exports make up more than two-thirds of its sales. The Cava denomination encompasses more than 93,900 acres of vineyards and more than 6,800 winegrowers. Try one sometime!
Champagne is made by different types of producers. The type can be identified from abbreviations that appear on every bottle of Champagne.
- NM stands for Négociant manipulant. These companies buy grapes and make the wine. Most of the houses (Moet & Chandon, Taittinger, Perrier Jouet etc.) are NMs.
- CM stands for Coopérative de manipulation. These are cooperatives that make wines from the growers who are members, with all the grapes pooled together (the well-known brand Nicolas Feuillatte is a CM).
- RM stand for Récoltant manipulant. These are “Grower Champagnes” that is, the grower makes wine from its own grapes.
Other initials you might see include:
- SR stands for Société de récoltants. An association of growers making a shared Champagne but who are not a co-operative.
- RC stands for Récoltant coopérateur. A co-operative member selling Champagne produced by the co-operative under its own name and label.
- MA stands for Marque auxiliaireor Marque d’acheteur. A brand name unrelated to the producer or grower; the name is owned by someone else, for example, a supermarket.
- ND stands for Négociant distributeur. A wine merchant selling under his own name.
Facts courtesy of Winespeed. Comments in between are mine!
Try the Pol Roger at least once. You might like it!!!