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THE CHAMPAGNE THREAD

Discussion in 'Drink, Smoke, and Fine Dining' started by Steelton Keith, Nov 29, 2020.

  1. Steelton Keith

    Steelton Keith F1 Rookie
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    Aug 19, 2009
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    Keith Hall
    After about a month into this COVID nightmare last April, my wife and I started a weekly practice of drinking a bottle of Champagne every Saturday night. We have had several examples of "Grower" champagnes and the NV bottlings of most of the big houses, including Pol Roger, Bollinger, Roederer, PJ, Ayala, Piper and Charles Heidsieck, Laurent Perrier, and our go-to Taittinger. I thought it might be fun to read your tasting notes as you enjoy your Champagne over the holidays. Please post your notes, recommendations, and reviews. Thanks, Keith
     
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  3. surfwolf

    surfwolf Formula Junior
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    Oct 14, 2012
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    Michael Wolfe
    I am a big fan of Krug champagne's.
     
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  4. Steelton Keith

    Steelton Keith F1 Rookie
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    Aug 19, 2009
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    So am I Michael and I have two bottles in the cave but it's a special occasion wine for me. We had the Taittinger Brut NV Saturday evening. It's a dry, but not austere wine with loads of bubbles and apple and pear driven fruit. Not so much lemon or citrus. You can taste a little chalk in the wine. Very refreshing, not yeasty or toasty by any means. One of our favourites. Cheers, Keith
     
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  5. Alcav5

    Alcav5 F1 Rookie
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    Jul 28, 2012
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    I love champagne , I drink it in style & in quantity like I used to drink beer basically every week end. :D lol.

    No flute necessary. I'll use a wine glass if I'm out at a party or a rock glass and even paper cup if I'm at home. I have no problem putting ice in it to get it nice & cold . I really enjoy the buzz over most other alcohols.

    After many years of it being my drink of choice and after trying many many different brands my go to is only Moet , I prefer knowing what to expect , I am done experimenting. I think I pay $46.99 a bottle less 10% for case purchases.

    Special occasions I will open Dom Perignon .

    The only other times I will have something different is if I receive a bottle as a gift or if I'm a a place that does not have my choice.

    Veuve clicquot or Krug are acceptable alternatives for me.

    I my my younger years I started with Henkel , then moved to a less expensive but satisfying Freixenet green bottle (not black bottle)

    Only brut for me , no rose.

    Interesting encounter in Italy was at Francescana at Maria Luigia where they severed a high end Giulio Ferrari sparkling (they italicized it in the menu as champagne) . I thought it was ok but not as good as my tried and true Moet.
     
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  6. Steelton Keith

    Steelton Keith F1 Rookie
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    AL. The old widow and Krug are at opposite ends of the spectrum for certain. Thanks for the post
     
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  8. lopena

    lopena Formula Junior
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    Nov 3, 2003
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    If you enjoy extra-extra-dry Champagne look for a bottle of “zero-dosage” or “non-dosage” Champagne. This designation indicates that the vintner skipped the customary step of added a dollop of sugar to promote secondary fermentation. The result is a bubbly with next-to-no residual sugar and a high “pucker factor”.

    Philipponnat Royale Reserve Non Dose is generally available here in the U.S. and it won’t break the bank.

    Enjoy!

    Alan
    N.J.
     
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  9. tomc

    tomc Two Time F1 World Champ

    Apr 13, 2014
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    Tom C
    We toured the Champagne region on our honeymoon a zillion years ago.

    A few years ago we bought old school champagne coupes. Sturdier than flutes, more fun than drinking out of tumblers.

    https://food52.com/blog/12220-from-cup-to-coupe-a-history-of-our-favorite-champagne-glass

    T
     
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  10. adc

    adc Karting

    Feb 1, 2009
    147
    Prefer to use white wine glasses for Champagne like Zalto Universal or Grassl Liberte. It allows sparkler to open and take in aroma while drinking.

    Just picked some of these up
    2008 Dom Perignon-loaded up. easy to resell and price goes up.
    2008 L. Aubry Fils Champagne Premier Cru Aubry de Humbert
    NV Vilmart & Cie Champagne Cuvee Rubis
    2010 Pierre Gimonnet & Fils Champagne Premier Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut Fleuron
    NV NV Jean Milan Champagne Grand Cru Grande Reserve 1864 Blanc de Blancs
    NV Nicolas Maillart Champagne Premier Cru Brut Platine
    NV Paul Bara Grand Brut Rose
    2006 Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Rose Brut 1.5L
    2006 Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Rose Brut
    2006 Taittinger Champagne Brut Blanc de Blancs Comtes de Champagne-this would be value play instead of 2008.
    2008 Cristal
     
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  11. Steelton Keith

    Steelton Keith F1 Rookie
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    adc: impressive list. Happy to have your tasting notes.
     
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  13. NbyNW

    NbyNW F1 Rookie
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  14. NbyNW

    NbyNW F1 Rookie
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    We love champagne. Need to enjoy it more often - like most once or twice a year. Not as knowledgeable on the nuances. We do like Moet and Mumm. Costco brand not so much. Veuve from Costco is ok also. Next time at the local shop I’ll lake a look.
     
  15. tomc

    tomc Two Time F1 World Champ

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    I thought so too. My wife and I bought the coupes because we saw Bogie et al. using them in a movie.
    I think it was Casablanca. It's fun...T
     
  16. tomc

    tomc Two Time F1 World Champ

    Apr 13, 2014
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    When we were @ Moet, our tour guide pointed out with pride that the typical French person drinks a huge # of bottles per annum (I forget the number) vs. a lame amount for American's (I think it was 1 - 2 bottles per annum, mostly @ holiday season). My wife and I resolved to do better, for the sake of patriotism! We probably go through about a couple of dozen bottles per year. We like it with BBQ - bubble cut through the richness of the meat - and I enjoy champagne (and sparkling wine and prosecco etc.) with spicy foods. Especially in the summer, when it is so hot here...T
     
  17. adc

    adc Karting

    Feb 1, 2009
    147
    I will see what I can do--not the best at tasting notes. I used to live in Hummelstown (close to Hershey)
     
  18. NbyNW

    NbyNW F1 Rookie
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    I toured Moet back in about ‘93. Loire Valley is beautiful. I really need to step up our champagne game.
     
  19. adc

    adc Karting

    Feb 1, 2009
    147
    2008 Cristal over Thanksgiving weekend. A fine mousse, little granny smith apple, lemon , nice acidity and taste is young and very fresh.
    I need to buy another case and see the evolution over 20 years.
    I need to buy more mags of Champagne!
     
  20. Alpintourer

    Alpintourer Formula 3
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    Jul 20, 2013
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    As a former Hot Air Balloon pilot, we traditionally carried a bottle of Champagne with us on every flight as a gift to the land owner or just to be shared with the crew. The tradition dates back to the 18th Century when gas balloons flew between countries and either the townsfolk thought an alien was invading or they did not comprehend the language spoken by the pilot. Basically a good will gesture understood by all. Since most balloon flights occur in the morning with calmer winds I could not really get into drinking before breakfast. My go to bubbly of choice became Asti Spumante. A bit more tolerable at 8AM.
    Did somebody say "residual sugar"?
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  21. parkem

    parkem Karting

    Feb 17, 2012
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    peter palermo
    prosecco has a much better taste to me
     
  22. JAYKAY

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    I am definitely a Bollinger fan, but love Champagne in general. I have lightened up a bit but used to say that if you paid $100 for a bottle of wine and it doesn’t sparkle, you’ve been conned.

    I enjoy pairing Veuve with dinner occasionally, especially with a pheasant since I hunt. Tattinger Brut La Francaise is lovely almost anytime and it’s hard to go wrong with Moet.

    Joseph Perrier’s Cuvee Josephine is under-rated for a vintage if you can find it. We just cracked a 1989 that I had been holding onto and it was still bright and lovely.

    I tried Bollinger’s PN VZ 15 this year, and wow. Yes, it’s $100. It is 100% Pinot Noir and it fantastic. I ended up buying two cases, and am prowling for more.

    JK
     
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  23. SCFerrari

    SCFerrari F1 Rookie
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    Jun 30, 2013
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    Pol Roger has become our house champagne...

    Made famous of course by Winston Churchill , who came through our area on a tour of the south and to meet with Bernard Baruch at his plantation right before the beginning of WWII and congress had to approve a bill to allow him to transport alcohol as it was still during prohibition I guess.
     
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  24. Pis7a2020

    Pis7a2020 Formula Junior

    Dec 17, 2019
    627
    I love Veuve. It’s our go-to casual Champagne. Costco has them at a great price. Outside of that, Perrier Jouet, Bollinger, and Pol Roger have some great, higher-end/special occasion Champagne as well.


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  25. tomc

    tomc Two Time F1 World Champ

    Apr 13, 2014
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    I don't have any brand recommendations. The wife & I tend to be mundane in the brands and vintages we try.
    I will recommend that if you are hosting a party, there is nothing better than large format bottles.
    As long as you can lift them, they make doling out the holiday bubbly easier and they seem more festive!

    Another recommendation. Sabering the bottle? Great party trick.
    Works great, if it works. But, practice outside! :) And, in the absence of a saber, a machete can be used instead. :D

    T
     
  26. lopena

    lopena Formula Junior
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    Nov 3, 2003
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    A few tricks to sabering a Champagne bottle:

    - Make sure the bottle is very cold...this makes the glass a bit more brittle.

    - Find one of the two seams that runs vertically up the bottle. Hold the bottle at a 45 degree angle to the ground, making sure no one is in the line of fire. Then run the saber very briskly along the seam to knock the top off the bottle...speed (not force) is essential.

    - Don’t worry about glass entering the bottle...the few ounces of bubbly that are forcibly discharged during the process will expel any glass fragments.

    Alan
    N.J.
     
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  27. Steelton Keith

    Steelton Keith F1 Rookie
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    Aug 19, 2009
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    We tried the Pommery Brut Rose Saturday evening. I would not buy it again. IIRC, it's a blend of Chardonnay, PN and PM. It had a very pale color, and good freshness with ample mid sized bubbles. I hoped to get a nice tart, berry filled taste but the wine has a disturbing, I would call it cloying sweetness on the finish. My wife did not care for it much either. It was a fair price at $ 50 but better values and plenty of options at that price point. For those who think Laurent Perrier Rose is the standard for non premium rose Champagne, the extra dough is worth it over the Pommery.
    I also like the NV Pol Roger. Have two bottles left. My wine guy got a deal and I paid $45 a bottle with the case discount last summer.
     
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  28. BrettC

    BrettC Formula 3

    Aug 13, 2012
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    Brett
    Try the Spanish Cava's. They are coming hard on French Champagne. My understanding is that the French Champagne's are struggling for good fruit these last some years. Wifey and I enjoy all kinds of sparkling but the Cava's have a nice flavor to them. Good value too.
     

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