Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Moet & Chandon 'Grand Vintage 2004'--ABSOLUTELY the 'Best Value High-End Champagne' for Holiday Celebrations by Philip S. Kampe

When you think of the ‘real bubbly’, most consumers think of Champagne from France.
The French have been developing Champagne for centuries.
None better than MOET & CHANDON, who have been in the Champagne business since 1842.
The Top Champagnes that Moet & Chandon produce are those of the ‘Grand Vintage’ years.
Each Grand Vintage is unique and occurs only after evaluating the harvest.
The Champagnes are made solely from the grapes of the vintage year, in this case 2004, where the quality has been elevated to their fullest by the Chef de Cave, Benoit Gouez,  and the years of experience of Moet & Chandon.
The result, amazing wines that can be served at the world’s finest events (Roger Federer, tennis guru, is their spokesman and brand ambassador), restaurants and at home, where you can enjoy each bottle, bubble by bubble.
The Holidays are upon us and elicit the perfect time to have the Moet & Chandon Grand Vintage experience.
Some Champagne tips:
If you serve the 2004 vintages to ring in the New Year and have at least half a bottle left, there is a solution.What I have learned is that you really don’t have to finish the bottle after that toast. Buy a better Champagne stopper at your local wine merchant and cork your bottle immediately after pouring. You can re-use the bottle the next day and have the same experience, cork sound included.
Champagne is about bubbles. Swirling is not necessary, as you will lose the effervescence. I have been told that lip balm is a no-no when sipping Champagne. It ruins the bubbles
Wine connoisseurs know that the Grand Vintages are made only in those years with exceptional harvests. One of those years is 2004, a year that has added not only the Grand Vintage, but the Grand Vintage Rose, only the 39th time a Rose has been included in the Grand Vintages in the past 172 years.
2004 is such an exceptional year.
My assignment was tough—I had to sample the 2004 Grand Vintages to try to understand why Benoit Gouez and Moet & Chandon chose this year as one of those ‘Rare’ opportunities to show homage to their ability to create a ‘World Class Vintage’.
Both the Brut and Rose have been aged for seven years. I found outstanding notes of dark fruit, dried figs, dates, spices and dark chocolate in the Rose. The wine is somewhat dry with tannic qualities that help highlight the Pinot Noir grape. The silkiness of the salmon- copper hue of the Rose make this a special Rose, one worthy of the Grand Vintage label.
The 2004 Grand Vintage Brut is classic Moet & Chandon in style: graceful, elegant, complex and mature. The personality of the Brut is full of charisma, yet approachable with its pronounced minerality and acidity. The notes of pear, nectarine, chalk and smoke make this a complex sparkling wine that has food written all over it. My guess it that you could choose any dish and this food friendly sparkling wine would oblige.

At $65 or under per bottle, I believe the 2004 Grand Vintage Brut and Rose are exceptional values.

Philip S. Kampe

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