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new vintage: 2005 bollinger ’vieilles vignes françaises’ 13 november 2014

It’s not everyday that one has the opportunity to taste  a new vintage of one of Champagnes true legendary wines – Bollinger ’Viewless Vignes Françaises’. (mer…)

lunch with champagne deutz 9 november 2014

August Strindberg and his bohemic friends discussed politics and poetry all day long in this dining room, which is named from his book, Röda Rummet. The book was published in 1879. Richard & Björnstierne was invited to lunch @ Röda Rummet Berns Asiatiska by Fabrice Rosset, CEO of Champagne Deutz to taste 5 new releases on the Swedish market.

Bern Röda Rummet Berns Röda RummetBerns Asiatiska

nv DEUTZ ’BRUT CLASSIC’ | Aÿ | 38PN 32PM 30CH | SBnr 7487 | 380 SEK |  TASTINGNOTE  ‘The Champagne is always of a high quality, but has previously been sold too early. If you put the wine aside for a few years in the cellar, a fine, bready note will develop, which will tone down the exaggerated apple-like fruit. I tasted a couple of bottles at the beginning of 2001 that already had a classic maturity. Very good, exuberant, and complex at the moment. I hope this tendency continues.’  RJpoints 76(84)

1995 DEUTZ ’MILLIÉSIME VINOTHÈQUE’ | Aÿ | 60PN 10PM 30CH  | 1 349 SEK | Swedish allocation 36 bottles | TASTINGNOTE  ’It feels like Deutz vintage wine has finally found its true self. Classic, irresistible style, without forgetting its past. Everything is in its place in a totally satisfying way. Mature Pinot Noir and sublime, crispy fruit in lovely harmony.’  RJpoints 96(96)

1995 DEUTZ ’BLANC de BLANCS VINOTHÈQUE’ | 100CH  | 1 349 SEK | Swedish allocation 48 bottles |  TASTINGNOTE  ’40% Le Mesnil-sûr-Oger, 50% Avize & 10% Villers Marmery.  Fantastic and indeed somewhat oilier than the usual issue. I suppose that the autolytic character will give this wine an amazing base for acceleration a little further on in the future.’ RJpoints 96(96)

2002 DEUTZ ’CUVÉE WILLIAM DEUTZ’ | 62PN 11PM 27CH  | 1 100 SEK | Swedish allocation 360 bottles | TASTINGNOTE  ’Pinot Noir: 62%, from vineyards in Ay, Mareuil-sûr-Aÿ, Bouzy, Louvois and Ambonnay. Chardonnay: 27%, from vineyards in Avize, Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, with a small proportion from the Montagne de Reims. Pinot Meunier: 11% from vineyards in Pierry and Chatillon-sur-Marne. Golden hue with crystal glints. Extremely fine bubbles. Delicate, rich and complex on the nose, developing floral and cooked white peach aromas, underpinned by lovely honey-sweet notes of spice and candied ginger. Well defined and clean on entry. Captivating, rich and full on the palate, the champagne releases a mélange of delicate cherry, wild peach and honey aromas. Its fine, harmonious balance shows promise. The finish is silky, complex and refined, with long lingering aromas.’ RJpoints 90(95)

2007 DEUTZ ’MILLÉSIME’ | 65PN 5PM 30CH  | 499 SEK | Swedish allocation 1 200 bottles |  TASTINGNOTE ’Pinot Noir: about 65%, from the terroirs of Bouzy, Mareuil-sûr-Aÿ, Verzenay, Aÿ and Ambonnay. Chardonnay: about 30%, from the terroirs of Avize and Villers-Marmery. Pinot Meunier: about 5%, from Binson-et-Orquigny. Soft pleasing vanilla-scented and cacao-orienterad aroma and a soft fruit and bread dominated taste for relatively early consumption.’ RJpoints 82(85)

2009 DEUTZ ’ROSÉ MILLÉSIME’ | 80PN 10CH  | 499SEK | Swedish allocation 360 bottles |  TASTINGNOTE ’The vineyards, or crus, that supply the Pinot Noir are a gage of its qualities: Aÿ, Mareuil-sûr-Aÿ, Bouzy and Verzenay. They epitomise the subtle and yet powerful qualities of the finest pinot noirs in Champagne. The style of this wine and its colour owe a lot to the incorporation into the blend of 8% red wine made by Deutz from a plot of old vines on the hillside at Aÿ – a plot known as « La Pelle » – and other specific plots at Mareuil-sur-Aÿ: « Cumaine » and « Charmont ». Tasted together with the worlds most expensive (!) caviar, the arctic char caviar – Northern Light Spirit at about €25 000 per kilo. The wine felt slightly dryer and and firmer then usual. The nose is very much Aÿ and has great potential, with the slightly heavy charachter of the vintage.’ RJpoints 83(88)

Champagne Deutz also launched a world premier – 2006 DEUTZ ’AMOUR de DEUTZ ROSÉ’ | 65PN 35CH  | aprox 1 500 SEK | TASTINGNOTE ’Fabrice Rosset has long wanted to profile of William Deutz Rosé from a gastronomically burgundy influenced wine into something sleeker and more modern. Unfortunately, I’m not entirely convinced that the style change was necessary, although I obviously understand and respect the decision. The bottle is incredibly beautiful, cool  and elegant as a Greta Garbo in black and white. The purity and minerality sharpness is surgically precise, but the intensity and the fruit is a little too toned down this time. More like a dry Belle Epoque than William Deutz at present.’ RJpoints 86(92)

Splash Deutz Bdb2

RJ ON DEUTZ  Two Germans, William Deutz and Pierre Gelderman, founded this prestigious firm in 1838 in Ay. Deutz was hit hard during the champagne uprising in 1911. For a long time the house was run by André Lallier, who made large investments in other wine regions. These include properties in the Rhone Valley, Maison Deutz in California and another sparkling wine from the Loire Valley. 1993 Louis Roederer acquired majority of Deutz. Today the firm is run proficiently by the sympathetic Fabrice Rosset. Winemaker Michel Davesne. 75% of the grapes are sourced from Grand- and premier cru plots. Deutz owns land in five villages. The property is among the most beautiful in Champagne and wines are also very distinguished. The style is laid-back, elegant and sophisticated with a medium full body and crystal clear fruit as well as an exemplary mousse. All wines are good, but Cuvée William Deutz Rosé is something special. Even the Vinothèque-wines and the white edition of William Deutz is world class. Deutz has launched an ultra sophisticated prestige champagne under the name Amour de Deutz selling like hotcakes since Madonna took it to heart. One of my real favorites!

Deutz bike

gosset @ mfw 20 oktober 2014

Björnstierne was invited by the new importer of Gosset, Espumante, to a tasting @ Magnusson Fine Wine.  Gosset mv GOSSET ‘BRUT EXCELLENCE’  | 45PN 13PM 32CH  | aprox  299 SEK |  TASTINGNOTE Less mighty and concentrated than the Grande Réserve, but more enjoyable in large amounts. The wine is rich in Pinot fruit and chocolate aromas. The dosage is unnecessarily high in both of Gosset’s nonvintage Champagnes.’  RJpoints 76(83

Gosset

mv GOSSET ‘GRANDE RÉSERVE’  | 44PN 10PM 46CH  | SBnr 87661  | 399 SEK |  TASTINGNOTE ‘A plump, oily champagne with tons of ripe apples and a fleshy Pinot flavour. It is only in the finish which is rich in mineral that one can detect the Chardonnay grapes. A wonderfully opulent standard champagne and always one of the best. With aging it gets filld with sweet almond and nutty aromas.’  RJpoints 84(90)

Gosset

mv GOSSET ‘GRANDE BLANC de BLANCS’  | 100CH  | SBnr 77477  | 549 SEK |  TASTINGNOTE ‘A wine I had never spotted in a blind tasting. There is nothing of the oxidative style that usually characterize Gosset. The wine is grande, austere and somewhat ascetic. The class turns out, however gently in the glass. Super Young!’  RJpoints 78(85)

Gosset

2004 GOSSET ‘GRANDE MILLÉSIME’  | 44PN 56CH  | SBnr 82190  | 599 SEK |  TASTINGNOTE ‘Crispy and scratchy while recently disgorged but a classic broad Gosset with all the rich dominated apple notes and that will be so enjoyable over time.’  RJpoints 84(92)

Gosset

2002 GOSSET ‘CELEBRIS EXTRA BRUT’  | 36PN 65CH  | 999 SEK |  TASTINGNOTE ‘A giant that has not reached full harmony yet. Fairly dry, rustic yet serious. Can be really big!’  RJpoints 86(91)

Gosset

1998 GOSSET ‘CELEBRIS EXTRA BRUT’  | 36PN 65CH  | 999 SEK |  TASTINGNOTE ‘All winemakers strive for equilibrium in one way or another. Gosset, with their oxidative, opulent style, must battle to achieve equilibrium by having a high level of acid and low dosage. In this case they have chosen to make an Extra Brut, which is a choice that I would not have made. I think that a slightly higher dosage would have made the wine rather more pleasing to the public and more harmonious from the start as well as protecting it against future oxidation. There is a great deal to indicate that its maturity will reach a slender peak, which one will have to aim at in order to be completely satisfied. This wine is otherwise clear and beautifully golden with lively mousse and a pompous Aÿ-Pinot aroma of an animal and red fruit type. Full-bodied and quite divorced from its actual grape composition at present. A short, dry finish on an otherwise lovely taste trip in the country of Aÿ.’  RJpoints 88(88)

Gosset

mv GOSSET ‘GRANDE ROSÉ’  | 44PN 56CH  | SBnr 7405 | 499 SEK |  TASTINGNOTE ‘Big and powerful like all of Gossets wines. Somewhat rustic and one-dimensional with aromas that mark it as a grower produced wine. The bouquet evokes thoughts of red apple peelings and plums. The sensation is very round and compact to the palate. Sometimes to malic.’  RJpoints 88(92 2007 GOSSET ‘CELEBRIS ROSÉ’  | 39PN 61CH  | SBnr 7405 | 499 SEK |  TASTINGNOTE ‘Big and powerful like all of Gossets wines. Somewhat rustic and one-dimensional with aromas that mark it as a grower produced wine. The bouquet evokes thoughts of red apple peelings and plums. The sensation is very round and compact to the palate. Sometimes to malic.’  RJpoints 92(93) RJ ON GOSSET Ruinart might be the oldest Champagne-producing firm, but Gosset made still wines much earlier. Pierre Gosset sold his “vin d’Aÿ” as a négociant as early as 1584. Today the family owns twelve hectares in the villages of Aÿ, Bouzy, Mareuil, and Rilly, all stocked up with Pinot Noir. This is only enough for 20 per cent of their needs, but the character of the villages is clearly apparent in their vintage wines. Gosset is one of the true traditionalists of the region, with labelling and disgorging being done manually. They also use old oak barrels in which they store their vintage wines for a brief period of time, thus imparting just a hint of oak character to the wine. The wines are always full-bodied and rich, with a great element of Aÿ Pinot and high-class Chardonnay. The winemaker is the ingenious Jean-Pierre Mareignier. In 1994, after more than 400 years of family ownership, Gosset was sold to the family group Renaud-Cointreau, which owns Cognac Pierre Frapin Grande Champagne. As Gosset is known and appreciated by initiated wine-lovers the world over, they can increase their international presence while still keeping their high quality. The distinctive cuvées are served at the finest restaurants. The vintage wines are especially enjoyable with the ethereal ’52 as a milestone—it won third prize at the Millennium Tasting! One of the absolute foremost domains in the Champagne region. The Célebris Blanc de Blancs is an utterly marvellous wine that turns ones thoughts to Krug Clos du Mesnil in combination with Charles Heidsieck and of course the finer vintages from Gosset. They have chosen to make this magical wine non-vintage with a great proportion of reserve wines and long storage leading to an almost perfect maturity at release. The wine has a powerful volume and simultaneously equilibristic delicacy. Sweet pineapple, orange, apricot and honey with a nutty base to the taste and freezia, hawthorn and almond in the aroma. Brilliant!

champagne spring trip – day 3 – Dom Pérignon 6 maj 2014

Bus left for l’Abbaye d´Hautvillers. We stoped at Champagne Dom Pérignon in Hautvillers and together with the world´s most famous winemaker Richard Geoffroy we tasted several vintages of regular Dom Pérignon and the rare black labeled Dom Pérignon Oenothèque. (mer…)

champagne spring trip – day 2 – Veuve Clicquot 4 maj 2014

The bus took us to Reims again. Some free time at the hotel was nice and som ewanted to be guided around the Cathedral and wine shops by Richard. For the evening we met up Hôtel du Marc for a Winemakers dinner at the wonderful private house of Madame Clicquot especially for our little group.

Veuve Clicquot Cellar

RJ on VEUVE CLIQUOT In Sweden, no Champagne is as well known as the “Gula Änkan,” the Yellow Widow. The house was founded in 1772 by Philippe Clicquot. His son, François, married Nicole-Barbe Ponsardin, who took over the company at the age of twenty-seven when she found herself a widow. By her side was Comte Edouard Werlé and the firm’s chef de caves, Antoine Müller. Together with Müller she developed “remuage” using “pupitres.” One Heinrich Bohne then helped to take the Russian market by storm. Throughout the nineteenth century and right up to the 1970s, Clicquot was reckoned as one of the top four or five Champagne companies, a position they still are very close to obtain. At first the company merged with Canard-Duchêne, but today it is a part of the powerful Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy (LVMH) group. The 284 hectares owned by Clicquot in twenty-two villages are enough for around three of the almost 18 million bottles produced each year. The most important crus for La Grande Dame and the vintage wine are Ambonnay, Bouzy, Avize, Cramant, Le Mesnil, Oger, and Verzenay. Since 1962 modern vinification techniques and stainless-steel tanks have been used. If you find old, well-kept vintages they’ll be very like Bollinger and Krug. Despite the factory scale, the house has managed to keep its Pinot-based classic style, where dough, bread, and pepper are clear elements. Jacques Peters, who is brother to François Peters in Le Mesnil and an equally gifted winemaker, should get the credit for Clicquot’s quality today. The talented new winemaker Dominique Demarville follows smothly in the same tracks. The rich and honeyed La Grande Dame is a wonderful champagne, but the powerfull and nutty vintage wine often gives best value for money. Cave Privée is probably the best bargain on the market. A classic house that is one of the greatest!

Veuve04

The theme for the dinner was 2004. | RJ ON 2004 ***  | A mild spring followed by a summer with unstable weather. Fortunately, the first weeks of September were hot and sunny and created good prospects for the harvest. In my opinion, the wines have a good structure with a rather floral bouquet but with a bit rough, stony mineral profile. The charm is missing, and it needs a fairly long storage before the cavities are filled in. Promising favorites that have reached the market include prestige champagnes from Thierry Perrion, Diebolt- Vallois, David Léclapart, and of course Jacques Selosse. Among the big elephants that are launched, I choose Mumm de Cramant, Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame, Dom Pérignon, and Louis Roederer Cristal.

Veuve Rosé on the terrace

But we started out on the beautiful terrace with a wonederful glass of rosé  | nv VEUVE CLICQUOT ‘ROSÉ’ | Reims | Champagne | France | Veuve Clicquot | 50PN 20PM 30CH | RJpoints 84(88)

TASTING NOTE A new rose wine from the old lady made in a modern, somewhat lighter style. A tribute to the added red wine is really feels well integrated and all blue notes are conspicuous by their absence. However, I lack Clicquot customary bready richness in this fairly light creation. Cyril Brun’s latest mint toffee scented titbit is astoundingly great!

Veuve Hotel du Marc

2004 VEUVE CLICQUOT ‘RICH RÉSERVE’ | Reims | Champagne | France | Veuve Clicquot | 59PN 8PM 33CH | RJpoints 82(85)

TASTING NOTE Nice together with foie gras, but the sugar is otherwise mostly in the way in this issue where the wine’s body is a little too round to completely fit in a sweet costume.

2004 VEUVE CLICQUOT ‘MILLÉSIME’ | Reims | Champagne | France | Veuve Clicquot | 62PN 8PM 30CH | RJpoints 88(91)

TASTING NOTE Embarking very promising but gets ’dark’ to quickly in the glass, indicating that it should be enjoyed sooner than many of the greatest wines from the house. Bright and toasty in magnum.

2004 VEUVE CLICQUOT ‘ROSÉ’ | Reims | Champagne | France | Veuve Clicquot | 71PN 9PM 20CH | RJpoints 87(92)

TASTING NOTE Extremely charming from start. Lots of beautiful berry tones however, also stylish animal touch from the start. Unprecedented charm and the balance from the start with stylish features of summer romance.

Veuve Demi-Sec Carafé

nv VEUVE CLICQUOT ‘DEMI-SEC’ | Reims | Champagne | France | Veuve Clicquot | 56PN 16PM 28CH | RJpoints 52(67)

TASTING NOTE Precisely as with Roederer, Clicquot has even more bottle maturity in its sweetest wine before sale. A trouser-opener, as the Germans say. Honey, strawberry and toffee, but sickly sweet after a while. A good way to introduce someone to champagne.

Extra Rare Vintage '52

AFTER-DINNER BOTTLES SERVED BLIND IN THE BAR  |  1952 VEUVE CLICQUOT ‘EXTRA RARE VINTAGE’ magnum  | Reims | Champagne | France | Veuve Clicquot | 67PN 33CH | RJpoints 98(98)

TASTING NOTE Absolutely outstandingly good! One of all these carzy magnums that Cyril and Dominique serves me and my VIPgroups instead of coffee at the Hôtel du Marc. Now it was a long time ago I tried the incredible ’55, but we’re on the same level of  quality. The scent is more animal and reminds of the truffle-oozing ’61, but the taste is ultra sleek, smooth, toffee and multilayered as a novel by Shakespeare! The best Champagne of the trip?!

Veuve Hotel du Marc the bar-h_PQYT3ywFPAbt4EW8

1996 VEUVE CLICQUOT ‘LA GRANDE DAME’  | Reims | Champagne | France | Veuve Clicquot | 64PN 36CH | RJpoints 94(96)

TASTING NOTE A surprisingly tranquil, high-octane, elegant La Grande Dame that will probably develop into one of the greatest vintages of this wine ever made. The balance is extraordinary and the wine has a silky appearance, devoid of both sharp edges and an exaggeratedly chocolaty, muscular body. Hints of hazelnut and white chocolate are present, but for the moment handsome fruit and fine mineral notes from Oger and Le Mesnil dominate. A uniquely long aftertaste that should convince doubters that something big is happening here.

15 champagne lovers | 8 champagnes | 3 vintages | 120 glasses | 4 dishes

Veuve140416_002-2

The day after we visited the cellars of Veuve Clicquot (the name Ponsardin has been retired). Cyril Brun set up a Vin Clairs tasting for us:

Veuve ClicquotVins Clairs pinot meunier Villedomagne2013btl100PM
Veuve ClicquotVins Clairs pinot noir Verzy2013btl100PN
Veuve ClicquotVins Clairs chardonnay Vertus2013btl100CH
Veuve ClicquotVins Clairs chardonnay Cramant2012btl100CH
Veuve ClicquotVins Clairs pinot noir Verzy2012btl100PN
Veuve ClicquotVins Clairs pinot noir Verzenay2008btl100PN
Veuve ClicquotVins Clairs chardonnay Villiers-Marmery2008btl100CH
Veuve ClicquotVins Clairs Bouzy Rouge2013btl100PN
Veuve ClicquotVins Clairs Final Blend2013btl
Veuve ClicquotLa Grande Dame2004btl64PN36CHRJ 94(96)
15 champagne lovers | 1 champagne | 9 vins clairs | 4 vintages | 150 glasses

Mature Veuve Clicquot – the tasting in sthlm 27 mars 2014

We gathered some members from Richard Juhlin Champagne Club this Thursday to taste some mature Vueve Cliquot’s. The Tasting took place @ The Champagne bar by Richard Juhlin in Stockholm.

(mer…)

Egly-Ouriet ’Brut Tradition’ 25 mars 2014

RJ on EGLY-OURIET This firm was established in 1930 and nowadays Michel Egly owns 7,7 hectares at Ambonnay, a third of a hectare at Bouzy and one and a half a hectare at Verzenay as well as 2 hectares Meunier in Vrigny. The average age of the vines is 35 years, with 60 years for the prestige wines. The wines are phenomenally great and rich. The grower is very close to gaining five stars through his fantastic development in recent years. Probably the foremost grower of Pinot Noir in the entire Champagne region nowadays. His much sought-after Blanc de Noirs Vielles Vignes comes from grapes from Pinot vines grown in 1946. They give this wine extra weight and density. The fruitiness is massive and soft, and the potential for maturation is enormous. He succeeds better and better for each issue. Nowadays this is a Selosse-like, exotic, oaky and biodynamically influenced giant among champagnes. The taste layers are fantastically generous and many-headed. Very close to 5 stars.

Egly-Ouriet 'Brut Tradition'

nv EGLY-OURIET ’BRUT TRADITION’ | Ambonnay | Champagne | France | Egly-Ouriet | 70PN 30CH | RJpoints 84(88)

TASTING NOTE A copy of Bollinger’s nonvintage Champagne. Chocolate, hazelnut and ripe apples. A broad, masculine fleshiness and vigor. Better and better with greater depth, elegance and Selosse-like barrel quality and organic style. Avoid the youngest and most recently disgorged specimens of all.