Single Bottle - Jeroboam - 3 Liters
Shows lovely texture and harmony, featuring a powerful backbone of acidity married to finely knit flavors of green pear and raspberry fruit, with hints of preserved lemon, biscuit and honey. Light spice and mineral details echo on the creamy finish. Drink now through 2030. 9,450 cases imported.
Jean-Baptiste Lécaillon calls Cristal "the first terroir cuvée of the Champagne." He furthers, "It’s not just Chardonnay or Pinot Noir, but the chalk that brings the ultimate finesse, length and precision of Cristal." Forty-five blocks with averaging age of 43-years-old, low-yielding vines form the base of Cristal, which is usually made of approximately 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay. Due to an early bud break (end of March) and the wet summer, the 2007 was picked at the end of August, so almost 100 days after the flowering instead of the normal 93-95 days. There is a bit less Pinot Noir than usual (57%) and accordingly, more Chardonnay (43%) in the 2007 Cristal. This Champagne comes along in a golden color and with a deep and matured, yet well-defined bouquet of ripe yellow fruits and honey notes. Full-bodied, round and very complex, the generous 2007 is a perfect mix of ripe fruit and precise minerality. It is a silky textured, pure and precise, as well as powerful and expressive Champagne. It has great tension and grip in the very long and persistent finish. Great expression of chalk. The 2007 was disgorged in 2015. The 2009 is to be released in September; the 2008 won't be in the market earlier than January 2018. Neither a 2010 nor a 2011 will be released, but a 2012. Except of the Brut Premier and the Carte Blanche (which I did never taste) all Roederer cuvées are vintage Champagnes; or to be more precise - terroir-driven millésimes. Since the prestigious family-owned estate in Reims cultivates a stately amount of grand cru vineyards between their pressing centers in Verzepay (Montagne de Reims), Ay (Vallée de la Marne) and Avize (Côte de Blancs), Louis Roederer focuses on the production of a neat range of distinctive Champagnes. These are not just influenced by the blending of varietals (mostly barrel-fermented Pinot Noir and Chardonnay but also Meunier), but the characteristics of every single plot whose musts and wines are carefully combined by chef de cave Jean-Baptiste Lécaillon. The result is a beautiful range of classic Champagnes that contain the famous Cristal (Blanc and Rosé). Mind you, though, that not a single cuvée of Louis Roederer is of just average quality. At least the difference of quality between the Blanc de Blancs Vintage (currently 2009) or the Vintage (2008) is much smaller compared to the Cristal (2007) than the price might indicate. In fact, I don't leave my home airport (in both directions) without buying a bottle of Roederer's excellent 2008 Vintage.