Tag: Champagne

There are 6 posts tagged as Champagne.

Will new EU regulations kill the AOC system?

Winemakers fear that the relaxation of laws requiring authorisation for new vine plantings in France may cause a glut of low-quality French wine and jeopardise the long-standing Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée system. The simultaneous introduction of a new, non-geographically specific appellation, Vins Sans Indication Geographique (VSIG) has only intensified these worries.

The death of Jean-Louis Foucault, known as Charly, has saddened the wine community of the Loire and beyond. With his brother Nady, Charly was the owner of Clos Rougeard in Saumur, and the two were pioneers of organic viticulture; they are also the eighth generation to run the estate, one of the most respected wineries in the Loire Valley. read more


Champagne comes to Kent as Europe warms

As nearly 200 countries reach a landmark agreement in Paris on lowering the greenhouse gas emissions that are making our planet increasingly, and dangerously warm, one Champagne house is taking steps to deal with the climate change that has already happened. Taittinger, whose own vineyards are pictured above, has bought 69 acres in Chilham, Kent on which to plant traditional Champagne grapes and make an English sparkling wine under the name Domaine Evremond – after Charles de Saint-Evremond, the high-living 17th-century writer who is believed to have introduced Champagne to the UK.

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Bordeaux in bloom: the best harvest for several years

Bordelais winemakers will be whistling while they work as they bring in what looks to be the best harvest since 2010. There is still a bit of uncertainty with the red grapes, which are still on the vines and will be for a few more weeks, but the whites are looking marvelous. Olivier Bernard of Domaine de Chevalier and president of the Union des Grands Cru says he hasn’t seen such an early, even véraison since 2009; “We are quietly confident” he writes exuberantly on Jancis Robinson’s website, that “this will be a great year!!!”

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Sunshine and glory in France’s famous vineyards

There’s a bright outlook to go with the sunshine in Bordeaux, as Gavin Quinney reports on Jancis Robinson’s website: after excellent conditions for early flowering in May and June, the region is well positioned for the incoming heatwave. If the Bordelais were in need of reminding that hard work and investment are as important as inheriting or buying exceptional terroir, the release of the Liv-Ex biannual reworking of the 1855 classification, an unofficial report aimed at identifying wine-market trends, may serve as an extra incentive not to rest on any laurels. All five First Growths remain at the top, but there are some interesting moves slightly further down that reflect the money and effort invested by certain wineries.

Not to be outdone, Burgundy and Champagne are celebrating a confidence-booster of their own: UNESCO has awarded vineyards in both regions World Heritage status. The Dijon area is, according to the awarding body, “an outstanding example of grape cultivation and wine production developed since the Middle Ages,” while the designated vineyards in Champagne are deemed particularly significant in the early development of méthode champenoise.

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The Price of Bubbles Just Keeps Rising

There is never a bad time to drink Champagne – particularly if you own vineyards within the appellation. At the recent auction for La Paulée de New York, a rare vertical of Krug Clos du Mesnil 1979-2003 sold for US$81,550, surely a figure worth celebrating with a bottle or two, while the upcoming Sotheby’s Hong Kong sale will feature over 1,000 bottles of Champagne including 341 bottles and 46 magnums of Krug ranging from 1979 to 1996, and just under 400 bottles of Dom Pérignon plus a few magnums. No matter how many competitors bubble up around the world – and the latest news is the UK’s push for a ‘Sussex’ appellation – the original sparkling wine has lost none of its fizz when it comes to investment potential. read more

Beautiful Sunset over a vineyard in French Provence

A bright outlook for 2015

The year begins, as always, with Burgundy, as producers and importers offer samples of 2013 for the en primeur tastings. The Burgundians have not had an easy time for the past few years – the weather seems determined to prove that ever-advancing technology is still the servant, not the master – and 2013 was no exception, with a cool, wet spring, summer hailstorms (again) and a humid September. Still, Jancis Robinson suggests that while this vintage is far from opulent, it is fresh and focused’ – so with expert guidance, we should all be able to keep ourselves in fine Burgundy for the next few years.

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