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Champagne Wines

Champagne Wines

Champagne Wines

Champagne Wines

"The sharp, biting acidity, cutting through the richness; the explosive force that shatters the bubbles as they rise to the surface; the intense flavor and compelling, lively mouthfeel; these are all hallmarks of a good Champagne. Most wines are made from a combination of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier, but there are pure-Chardonnay variants and ones that blend only Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. As a result, most wines come with a feeling of familiarity, if not nostalgia. Each Champagne house has its own unique style, so different bottles of Champagne may not resemble each other outside of the core varietal strengths. The soil composition of the subregion is characterized by belemnite and chalk, which lets it absorb heat during the daytime and release it at night. This terroir helps create the feeling of airy, playful lightness of fine sparkling wine.

These wines were originally marketed towards royalty, and you can feel a hint of that elusive blue-blood elegance and confidence while drinking one. A good Champagne carries you away like a hurricane carries small debris, and you can feel the powerful life force in each bubble even. The characteristic Champagne “pop” has become a staple at parties and celebrations around the globe – when you hear it, good times are right around the corner."
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2005 taittinger comtes de champagne Champagne

(Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut (Reims)) The 2005 Comtes de Champagne is a stunning young wine. The bouquet is deep, pure and youthfully complex, as it offers up a very classy blend of pear, delicious apple, fresh almond, incipient notes of crème patissière, chalky minerality, brioche and just a whisper of vanillin oak in the upper register. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, focused and rock solid at the core, with exquisite balance, refined mousse, crisp acids and simply superb length and grip on the seamless, youthful and oh, so promising finish. The style of the 2005 vintage gives this some early accessibility that was not evident with the more tightly-knit 2004 out of the blocks, but this wine has the structure to also age long and very, very gracefully. It has been a year since I last tasted this wine and it has started to show more precision to go along with its early generosity and is a classic in the making. My gut feeling today is that it will be superior to the 1989 version, to which I compared it to a year ago. Brilliant wine. (Drink between 2015-2045)John Gilman | 95+ JGThe 2005 Comtes de Champagne is a deep, rich, full-bodied beauty that packs serious amounts of fruit and texture, while never seeming heavy or rustic. Loaded with notions of orchards fruits, toast, caramelized citrus and distinct minerality, it has a broad, expansive, yet fine mousse, beautiful mid-palate depth and a great, great finish. It’s well worth seeking out. (Drink between 2017-2032)Jeb Dunnuck | 95 JDWith just a touch of bottle age giving a toasty character, this impressive wine is already showing some maturity. That said, the apple and citrus character, the mineral tight texture and crisp acidity promise some aging. The wine conveys a sense of elegance, intensity and richness. Drink now, but the wine will also age. Wine Enthusiast | 95 WE(Taittinger, Comtes de Champagne, Champagne, France, White) The cold dry winter was followed by a warm and wet July, and then a cooler than usual August. The temperature then escalated, turning extremely hot towards the end of August. The nose is surprisingly restrained, with lime blossom tea and herbaceous notes. The palate is a bit richer, with a creamy, fat mouthfeel and toasted characters lifted by a cleansing acidity, followed by a chalky, mineral finish. (Drink between 2020-2035)Decanter | 94 DEShows lovely balance, with a chinalike backbone of acidity, finely meshed with a creamy mousse and rich and toasty flavors of roasted hazelnut, creamed apple, lemon parfait and spun honey. A vein of smoky minerality echoes on the finish. Drink now through 2028. 700 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 94 WSTaittinger fans will want to stock away at least a few bottles of the 2005 Comtes de Champagne, if nothing else to satisfy the urge while some of the more important recent vintages continue to age in the cellar. The 2005 is immediate, deep and nicely textured, with overt fruit and fewer of the intense floral, mineral-driven notes that are typical. The first signs of aromatic development appear to off on the horizon by a few years, but at the same time, I don't expect the 2005 to be one of the more long-lived vintages here. Comtes de Champagne remains the best value in grand marque Tête de Cuvée Champagne.Antonio Galloni | 93 AGA flashy, stylish Blanc de Blancs, this has exotic, dark tones to its mature fruit and toasty lees. Severe at first, like a brooding supermodel, this relents with air and gives a little plumpness, sharing some of its riches in a supple, elegant texture. With its heady complexity, this is a Champagne to serve with blini and smoked salmon.Wine & Spirits | 93 W&SThe 2005 Comtes de Champagne has a beautifully composed nose that is extremely cool, mineral and precise and attracts with highly elegant and discreet bright and fresh fruit aromas (white apples, lemons, grapefruits) along with chalk and hazelnut flavors and nougat. Full-bodied, lovely, pure and quite complex on the palate, this is a fresh, buoyant and firmly structured Comtesse with a persistent minerality and an impressive clarity and freshness. It is quite reduced at the moment and lacks, perhaps, complexity but there is a touch of sweetness and a good chance for further development.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 92 RP

95+
JG
As low as $159.00
2005 louis roederer cristal Champagne

(Louis Roederer Cristal Brut) The 2005 Cristal is a legend in the making, but this wine is still very young and closed and some extended bottle age will be necessary to really allow all of the multi-faceted elements here to blossom and come to the fore. The cépages is the same as for the 2006, fifty-five percent pinot noir and forty-five percent chardonnay, but this does not mean that Jean-Baptiste Lécaillon selected vins clairs from the same crus for the two vintages! The 2005 vintage was considered strongest for chardonnay, so careful selection of pinot noir vins clairs for the Cristal in this vintage was of paramount importance, though the domaine’s superb holdings in Verzenay and Verzy certainly made the selection process a bit easier. The 2005 Cristal offers up a deep, extremely primary and very promising bouquet of apple, pear, a gorgeously complex base of chalky soil tones, incipient nuttiness, citrus peel, smoke, a touch of lavender and a topnote of peach blossoms. On the palate the wine is pure, full-bodied and absolutely rock solid at the core, with great focus and finesse, very refined mousse, a crisp girdle of acidity and great length and laser-like focus on the poised, primary and utterly refined finish. The 2005 is an utterly brilliant Cristal in the making, but give it time to blossom in the cellar! (Drink between 2019-2060)John Gilman | 97 JGThe iconic Roederer Champagne, Cristal’s latest release, brings a perfect balance of richness and age worthiness. It is full of apple flavor, and the mousse is very fine and almost imperceptible. As so often with a beautifully blended wine like this, a few minutes breathing brings out extra complex flavors. It certainly should age over five years and more.Wine Enthusiast | 97 WEThe complexity and youthful freshness here makes a striking Champagne that offers immense pleasure and a certain richness and depth that reflects the style of the vintage with some warmth reflected in the wine. The nose has rich citrus and stone fruits, some white flowers, light creamy honey notes and fresh sweet pastry, it has a toasty thread that has built quickly in the wine. Plenty of body on the palate, it has a wealth of assertive citrus and more exotic fruits too, the power and concentration undeniable, the length impressive and the balance impeccable. Already great drinking here. Slightly higher chardonnay component at around 45%. -NSJames Suckling | 96 JSEvery vintage can’t be 2002, or even 2004. Even so, this is pretty great, an open, airy, whip-smart delivery of Cristal’s spark, a wine of formidable delicacy. The undertow is there, drawing down a wave of spicy oak notes and heady crème caramel to reveal glints of limestone, the bright shimmer of acidity sustained by the cool rootedness in the soil. In 45 words of my notes on this wine, there’s not a single mention of fruit. Instead, they focus on brightness, subtlety, lusty juiciness, balance and mouthwatering complexity.Wine & Spirits | 95 W&S(L036332A109909): Bright yellow-gold. Heady floral-accented citrus and orchard fruits on the nose, with smoky mineral and floral overtones adding complexity. Velvety and chewy in texture, offering deep, juicy orange and poached pear flavors and suave honey and chamomile nuances. Blends precision with power, finishing with a distinct mineral quality and excellent persistence.Vinous Media | 94 VMVibrant and mouthwatering, this offers a range of patisserie pear and apple fruit, candied lemon zest, pastry dough and marzipan notes set on a finely detailed texture, which imparts a great deal of finesse. The lasting finish echoes a smoky mineral note. Drink now through 2025. 20,000 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 94 WS(Louis Roederer Brut - Cristal Champagne/Sparkling) Like the 2006 this is notably ripe with plenty of yeast, brioche and orchard fruit characters but in this case there is no tropicality. There is fine mid-palate density to the relatively powerful and very rich flavors that possess excellent complexity on the lingering finish that really fans out as it sits in the mouth. Like many 2005s this is not an especially refined vintage for Cristal nor does it possess the effervescent punch it usually does. Those aspects duly noted, this certainly cannot be faulted in terms of richness and complexity and for my taste, this is probably drinking about as well as it’s going to though I underscore that it should drink well for many years to come. (Drink starting 2015)Burghound | 93 BHThe 2005 Cristal stands out for its exceptional inner perfume and elegance. Soft, delicate and pretty, the 2005 is a relatively immediate Cristal with all of the signatures very much in the right place. The 2005 doesn’t have the opulence of the 2002 nor the focus of the 2004, but it is a very pretty, if somewhat small-scaled version of this iconic Champagne. I would drink the 2005 while the 2002 and 2004 age. Although Cristal has an impeccable track record when it comes to aging, personally I would not push it with the 2005. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2020.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 93 RP

94
WS
As low as $405.00
2005 taittinger comtes de champagne rose Champagne (Rose)

(Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Brut Rosé (Reims)) The 2005 Comtes de Champagne Brut Rosé from Champagne Taittinger is a blend of seventy percent pinot noir and thirty percent chardonnay, with fifteen percent of the pinot being red still wine from Bouzy fruit. All of the fruit for this bottling hails from grand cru villages and is first-press. The wine offers up a deep and utterly superb aromatic constellation of strawberries, blood orange, rye toast, complex, chalky soil tones, plenty of smokiness, a touch of orange zest and lovely spice tones in the upper register, with notes of cumin and clove predominant. On the palate the wine is pure, full-bodied and seamlessly balanced, with a great core, superb complexity, bright acids, superb mousse and great length and grip on the crisp and nascently complex finish. This is still very early days for the 2005 Comtes Rosé, and though it is very easy to drink today, it will be even better with four or five more years of bottle age. Another absolutely brilliant Comtes Rosé from Taittinger. (Drink between 2015-2040)John Gilman | 95+ JGLightly toasty and creamy in texture, this graceful rosé offers a firm backbone of acidity and rich flavors of raspberry coulis, dried strawberry, mille-feuille and graphite. Drink now through 2022. 250 cases imported. — ANWine Spectator | 93 WSThe 2005 Comtes de Champagne Rosé is a wine of contrasts. At first rich and vinous on the palate, the 2005 turns more delicate with time in the glass as its silkier and floral qualities become more evident. Sweet red berry and spice notes linger on the delicate finish.Antonio Galloni | 93 AGThe Taittinger 2005 Brut Rose Comtes de Champagne exhibits a delectable nose of fraise du bois, red raspberry and maraschino discreetly complemented by anise, vanilla, and Ceylon tea. Silken in feel and with exceptionally fine and at once stimulating and caressing mousse, this finishes with luscious abundance of juicy fresh red berries supported by appropriate sweetness, hints of fine, tea-like tannins, crunchy berry seeds, chalk and toasted almond serving for satisfying counterpoint. It should prove rewarding to follow for several years, but don’t miss out on its youthful pleasures!Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 92 RP

93
WS
As low as $319.00

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