Updated: Jan 13
This years alternative Cuvee tasting will be on the 16th January 2023 starting at 6pm.
Location of this years event is Bateaux London, Embankment Pier Victoria Embankment, London, WC2N 6NU.
Our function this winter will again focus on ‘Alternative Cuvées’ from each of the 16 houses, be it a Rosé, Blanc de Blancs, Blanc de Noirs, Single Vineyard wines, or any other special cuvée that the houses would like to show.
Here what will be on show this year
Charles Heidsieck Blanc de Blanc
Charles Heidsieck was one of the very first Champagne Houses to demonstrate its passion for Chardonnay by producing a Blanc de Blancs in its 1949 vintage. There is also evidence that the Maison had produced some mono-crus from the Côte des Blancs as early as1906... Through this cuvée, relaunched in 2018, two of the House’s areas of expertise come together: the production of great white wines and the art of blending a large selection of wines from different years and terroirs. The considerable challenge is to make opposites coexist: the tautness and the freshness of young chardonnays on the one hand, and the silky “Charles” character on the other.
The Blanc de Blancs is the result of a very selective blend of 100% Chardonnay from the Côte des Blancs and, in particular, the cuvée base 2016 is composed of 10 crus of Chardonnay, the most sought-after grapes in the region.
For this cuvée, only the juice from the first press are used and, the wines benefit from a slow and long maturation of 3 to 4 years, far beyond the norms of the region.
(**This wine TBC**)
Champagne Veuve Clicquot, Extra Brut, Extra Old, Edition 3
True to its expertise in the Art of Blending, Veuve Clicquot enriched its Extra Brut Extra Old collection in 2021 with a new cuvée composed of 8 years selected among its remarkable reserve wines: 1990, 1998, 1999, 2008, 2009, 2012, 2013, and 2014.
A precise Champagne made for wine lovers, this new wine is matured twice. First in vats on fine lees for several years, then in cellars for a further three years before disgorgement, giving it its texture and aromatic complexity.
On the nose, Extra Brut Extra Old 3 reveals aromas of white flowers, citrus fruits (lemon), white fruits and opens with notes of bread dough and orange peel. The first sip reveals a great freshness on the palate, then comes the complexity and depth. Extra Brut Extra Old 3 has an aging potential of more than 15 years and brings all the precision and liveliness of a rare and complex Champagne.
Champagne Krug, Rose, 25eme Edition, Brut
Krug Rosé 25ème Édition was composed around the harvest of 2013. The season began with a seemingly endless winter followed by a rainy and cool spring. Luckily, summer was hot and sunny, although also marked by hailstorms, which took their toll in the vineyards. The wines of 2013 were complete, expressive and full of flavours.
To craft the final creation, wines of the year, which include vibrant and chiselled Chardonnays from plots in the Côte des Blancs, the Sézannais and the Montagne de Reims, and structured Meuniers from plots in Sainte Gemme, were blended with selected plots’ reserve wines from 4 other years. Unctuous reserve wines from plots in the year 2008 add roundness, while Pinot Noir wines from plots in Ambonnay and Bouzy across different years impart fruit intensity and Meuniers of 2012 add structure.
In all, reserve wines from the House’s extensive library made up 50% of the final blend of this Édition of Krug Rosé
Champagne Lanson, Le Black Reserve, Brut
With over 260 years of winemaking history, Lanson is one of the oldest Champagne houses. Their Black Label was famously given as a tribute to the Royal Court of England in 1937. They've been supplying it with world-class wine ever since. The Lanson Black Label has a fine stream of persistent bubbles and a beautiful straw colour. The nose is vibrant with hints of toast and flowers leading to a palate of citrus and ripe fruit. The perfect Champage to elevate the flavours of fish and chips.
Champagne Laurent-Perrier, Blanc de Blancs, Brut Nature
Although bone dry, the bottle age has given this an uncommon level of weight and richness that serves as the perfect counterpoint. This may be Laurent Perrier’s first Blanc de Blancs, but it is a masterpiece. Created using the finest Chardonnay grapes sourced from Grand Cru and Premier Cru vineyards, this delightfully crisp and refined Champagne is a stunner.
Champagne Moet and Chandon, Grand Vintage, Rose, Brut
Following in the footsteps of the vintage before it, the 44th Grand Vintage Rosé further enhances an inspired collection of Moët & Chandon vintage champagnes. Every Grand Vintage is unique, original, and expresses the Cellar Master's free, personal interpretation to reveal the exceptional personality of singular vintage years. The Moët & Chandon Grand Vintage spirit is founded on three essential values: freedom of interpretation, selection of the year's most remarkable wines and individuality of the vintage. Grand Vintage champagnes distinguish themselves with their maturity, complexity and charisma. The initial notes of the bouquet are sweet, tinged with a red berries fruit salad (wild strawberries, raspberries, pomegranate seeds) complemented by tart notes (blood oranges, star fruit) before evolving towards darker fruit (blackcurrants, figs) and finally a hint of spice (black pepper, dark chocolate, cinnamon)
Champangne G.H. Mumm, 6 Ans, Brut
Structured around Pinot Noir, this specific blend has matured slowly over 6 years, under the careful expertise of Didier Mariotti, Maison Mumm's cellar master. Extended ageing allows the wine to express different facets and blossom to perfection revealing ripe baked fruit and spice aromas.
Champagne Perrier-Jouet, Blason Rose, Brut
Perrier Jouet Blason Rosé Brut Champagne is a fantastic rosé and shows hints of strawberry and red fruits on the nose and a rich long palate. A delicious blend of rose and orange flowers with sensual freshness and full-bodied aromas. Pomegranates, pears, apricots, blood oranges, the fragrances of mature red fruits... a juicy and generous blend that gives way to notes of biscuit, butter and pastries. The delicate character of white honeysuckle flowers remains throughout. The Blason Rosé is an intense and balanced champagne.
Champagne Piper Heidsieck Essentiel Blanc de Blancs, Extra Brut
Since its founding in 1785, the House of Piper-Heidsieck has proven its innovative prowess in selecting and blending wines of exception. A quest for excellence and open-mindedness are reflected in the entire range of champagnes created by Chief Winemaker Emilien Boutillat, serve as guarantor the Piper-Heidsieck style.
Essentiel Blanc de Blancs is sourced from the most magnificent Chardonnay vineyards in Champagne. A large proportion of reserve wines are harmoniously blended with wines of the year to ensure the purest expression of the varietal
Champagne Pol Roger, Rich, Demi Sec
This sweeter style was reintroduced to satisfy the demand from markets where a semi-dry Champagne was required to pair with desserts or wedding cake or for those with a sweeter palate. In all other regards it is a replica of the Brut Réserve.
The nose opens with beguiling hints of beeswax and apricot which are repeated on the palate and reinforced with notes of acacia honey. Despite the sweetness it is remarkably refreshing and the acidity cuts right through the heart of the champagne leaving the palate cleansed. This would be the perfect toast to serve with wedding cake but equally it complements tarts and crumbles.
Champagne Louis Roederer, Rose, Brut
Salmon hue with bright red tints. A ripe, complex and youthful bouquet of slightly tangy red fruit such as redcurrants, blackcurrants, blood orange and roasted cocoa beans. After some time in the glass, the wine reveals sappier, floral and sweet notes with a saline, almost briny, core. Crisp mineral freshness with a fresh lingering finish.
Champagne Ruinart, Rose, Brut
Ruinart is a low-profile, yet select, Champagne house which is steeped in history. It was founded in 1729 by Nicolas Ruinart in the city of Reims, the year after a Royal Decree in 1728, whereby Louis XV gave his consent for sparkling wines to be shipped in baskets containing 50 to 100 bottles. This opened the gates of Europe to Champagne and thus makes Ruinart the oldest Champagne House.
Premier and Grand Cru sites only supply the grapes for this excellent rosé, which is made up of 45 percent Chardonnay and 55 percent Pinot Noir, with 18 percent of the latter added as red wine. A subtle nose of rosehip, spice and wild strawberry; on the palate the wine marries exuberant fruit with a richly velvety texture. Ruinart is famous for their Rosé; justly so it would seem
Champagne Bollinger, PN VZ16, Brut
PN VZ16 is the second interpretation in a new series that will be released every year, always with a focus on one of Bollinger’s Pinot Noir crus, or villages. Each year the cuvee will be an expression of a different cru from the base year that highlight's its distinctive terroir and taste. PN VZ16 highlights Verzenay (VZ) which makes up 50% of the blend with the balance from Avenay and Tauxières. The blend features 50% from 2016 and 50% of Bollinger's reserve wines with the oldest from 2006.
Champagne Taittinger, Brut Millesime 2006 en Magnum
The Taittinger Vintage Brut is exclusively produced from first press wines, blended from 50% Chardonnay and 50% Pinot Noir. The Grands Crus make up a significant proportion at 70%, while the other selected villages are all classified as Premiers Crus. Ageing in the cellars for 5 years enhances complexity and helps the wine to flourish. The vivid, lively nose exudes fruity and floral aromas, with a white blossom bouquet (orchard flowers, lime blossom, honeysuckle) punctuated with aromas of fresh fruits (lemon, peach) giving way to almond notes with a hint of brioche.
The palate is crisp and wonderfully precise. With citrus influences, it offers a truly excellent balance of structure and sophistication. The finish is complex, with both elegance and length. Also featuring creamy bubbles, this vintage has all the qualities to make it a great wine. In its youth, it expresses itself superbly on its own, and then as the years go by, its generous structure will pair equally well with delicate and refined dishes.
Champagne Pommery Apanage Rose
Pommery Apanage Rosé Champagne NV 75cl has a characteristic pale pink colour of Pommery rosé Champagnes. Its captivating hue enhances the fine bubbles that rise resplendently in the glass. On the nose it has great freshness and wonderful elegance revealing aromas of red currants, and raspberries. The palate is rich and well-balanced, easy to savour before culminating in an unforgettable finale with wonderful freshness.
Silver Medallist - International Wine Challenge 2015Silver Medallist - International Wine and Spirit Competition 2015Silver Medallist - The Drinks Business, The Champagne Masters 2014
Champagne Heidsieck Monopole Rose
Heidsieck & Co Monopole is based in Epernay. Owns 420ha of vineyards (including some of the best Grand Crus vineyards), with another 2,800ha of vineyards under long and short term contracts.
Extremely intense pale pink in colour with a depth of colour set off by tiny fuchsia reflections.
The nose is floral with subtle hints of violet. Then the flowers are followed by fruity aromas of similar delicacy - wild strawberry and raspberry. It is fresh and spring-like on the nose.
Traditionally served with desserts, and particularly fruit desserts, especially ones made with red fruits, but can also be served as a nice accompaniment to fish grilled on a plancha and grilled shellfish