Kendall-Jackson Vintner’s Reserve Chardonnay 2015  – Wine Review

Kendall-Jackson Vintner’s Reserve Chardonnay 2015  
Wine Review

Lush tropical fruit integrated with some citrus notes. These flavors are carried through to the palate with some hints of vanilla spice to round out the long, lingering finish.

Recommended Food Pairings:

White meats, brie, goat cheese, parmesan, butter and cream sauces.

Notes:

America’s #1 selling Chardonnay for 25 years!

90/100
Liz Palmer
March 14 2017

CHAMPAGNE AFFECTED BY CHARDONNAY SHORTAGE

During the London launch last week of Dom Ruinart 2006 and Dom Ruinart Rosé 2004, Ruinart’s Chef de Cave, Frédéric Panaïotis said that supply was now being constrained by the amount of Chardonnay grapes it could source for the house – a specialist in Blanc de Blancs Champagnes.

“Everything is going well but my boss would be happier if we could get more Chardonnay grapes,” he began.

“Chardonnay is still less than 30% of the planted area in Champagne, and the price is not cheap for Chardonnay grapes, while buying vineyards is not easy, so we have to grow slowly: demand is faster than the growth we could have, but we are used to it,” he added.

Frédéric Dufour, the president & CEO of Ruinart, said that the supply of Chardonnay was limiting growth for the house, describing the grape as a “precious raw material” in Champagne.

“The hardest grape to get is Chardonnay, because even if you have Pinot Noir, you need Chardonnay, and Chardonnay is the least planted grape [in Champagne],” he said.

He then commented, “And for great Chardonnay you need chalk, and certain slopes, and the quantities of Chardonnay produced can be tricky – the grape is fragile because it blossoms early; so great Chardonnay is the most challenging to get.”

He also recorded that, despite the shortage, no more Chardonnay is being planted in Champagne, commenting, “Everything that can be planted to make good Chardonnay has been planted.”

Having observed that “everyone is after good Chardonnay,” he stated, “Good Chardonnay is the most precious raw material in Champagne today.”

Of the 34,000 hectares of vineyards in Champagne today, approximately 10,000ha are planted with Chardonnay, an area that has gradually risen almost 30% over the past 20 years.

Chardonnay is the least planted grape in Champagne, with more than 13,000ha devoted to Pinot Noir, and around 11,000ha given over to Meunier.

Ruinart is a specialist in Champagnes made from Chardonnay: Its ‘R’ de Ruinart NV contains a minimum of 40% Chardonnay; its Ruinart Blanc de Blancs is 100% Chardonnay, sourced predominantly from Premier Cru vineyards, while the Ruinart Brut Rosé is typically 45% Chardonnay and 55% Pinot, of which 18% is red wine.

Meanwhile, the prestige cuvée Dom Ruinart is made entirely with Grand Cru Chardonnay, predominantly from the Côte des Blancs (70%) and the remainder from the Montagne de Reims. And the Dom Ruinart Rosé has the same basis as the blanc, to which 15%-20% red wine (Pinot Noir from Verzenay and Verzy) is added.

The suggested retail prices for the current releases from Ruinart are as follows:

Dom Ruinart Blanc 2006 – £140.00

Dom Ruinart Rosé 2004 – £200.00

 

 

Source:  The Drinks Business

Book Review: The Ultimate Guide To Champagne

 

“Congratulations Liz for putting your PASSION for Champagne into life and making it accessible to many people.

Great book, with all what needs to be known about Champagne and getting to appreciate it more, from his history to his making, and demonstrating again that wine (even if it is not still) is always about people and passion!

Thank you for your great contribution to the world of wine and your tribute to Champagne.”

 

Christian Frayssignes
Christian Wine Consulting
www.christianwineconsulting.com

Queen Elizabeth Ends Every Day with a Glass of Champagne

Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-reigning English monarch, ends each night with a glass of champagne.

Her majesty’s cousin Margaret Rhodes reports that Elizabeth II drinks at least one glass of champagne before bed. The exact brand of her nightly libation is unknown, it’s almost certainly one of the eight brands that have been granted royal warrants, including Bollinger, Krug, Lanson, and Pol Roger.

 

Heidsieck’s “Champagne Charlie” is making a come back

Under EPI ownership, Charles Heidsieck is planning to resurrect its prestige cuvée called Champagne Charlie, which was axed in 1985 when Rémy Martin bought the brand.

Champagne Charlie was launched with the 1979 vintage, and was named after the founder of the house, Charles-Camille Heidsieck, known as Champagne Charlie.

According Stephen Leroux, “Champagne Charlie will come back”… “We have made the wine, but it won’t hit the market for 5-6 years.”

Explaining why the prestige cuvée was discontinued, he said that Rémy stopped producing Champagne Charlie in 1985 after acquiring the house because the group included Krug, which was prioritized as the top-end Champagne in the stable.

“There was Krug, Charles Heidsieck and Piper [Heidsieck], and Krug was the prestige Champagne, Piper the commercial one, and Charles was supposed to be the niche and good-value Champagne, but there was no focus on it,” he recalled.

While Krug was sold to LVMH in 1999, Charles and Piper were acquired by EPI in 2011, under the new owner both houses have been undergoing a repositioning as the company, which is 100% owned by the Descours family, is bringing the houses back to their former glory.

But for those unable to wait for the rebirth of Champagne Charlie, Leroux said that the house is releasing historic vintages of the vintage-dated prestige cuvée from its cellar.

“In the meantime we are selling some of the old Champagne Charlie from five vintages, ’79, ’81, ’82, ’83 and ’85, and this will be under an oenoteque concept in very small quantities.”

The price of these late releases, some of which have already been disgorged, will range from £300 to £600 per bottle, according to Leroux, who also said that all late-releases direct from the Charles Heidsieck cellars would, from this year, receive a special label.

“We are coming up with new labelling for our older vintages, so whether it is Champagne Charlie, Blanc de Millénaires, or Royal Cuvée, there will be new packaging for these wines, which will be released in tiny quantities,” he said. (Charles Heidsieck released a Royal Wedding Cuvée to celebrate the marriage of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer in July 1981).

 

Source:  Drinks Business