Posts Tagged ‘Sparkling’

The drinks business has compiled a list of the current top 10 Champagne brands by global volume sales.

While there are few dramatic changes to this year’s rankings – the slide by Piper Heidsieck was widely forecasted as a result of the brand’s recent repositioning – what does stand out is the decline in sales seen by so many of these major players in the Champagne category.

For many consumers, especially in more traditional markets, Champagne stands firm as the ultimate celebratory drink. However, this slide in sales appears to be the result of two aligning forces: ongoing economic difficulties in some of the category’s biggest markets and the growing competition Champagne faces from an increasingly ambitious sparkling wine market.

Read on to find out which brands are dominating today’s Champagne market.

Read on …

 
London’s wine merchants were delighted on Thursday morning to get a preview of Dom Perignon 2004 – as one said, ‘Finally, something we can sell’ after the lacklustre Bordeaux en primeur campaign.

 
Indeed, Gareth Birchley of Bordeaux Index told Decanter.com they sold 3000 six-bottle cases within the first few hours of the morning – a repeat of their instant sell-out of the Dom Perignon Rosé 2002, which was released in January.
‘We’ve sold three times our original allocation. That’s £1m worth since nine o’clock this morning.’

Buyers were ‘predominantly from the UK,’ Birchley said. ‘It’s by far our biggest market for prestige Champagne.’ He added that they were expecting such a demand.

Vincent Chaperon, Dom Perignon’s chief oenologist and second in command to chef de cave Richard Geoffroy, was in London this morning for a ‘soft launch’ of the 2004 vintage to wine merchants.
Read on …

Also read:

 

Russian consumers have yet to embrace brut sparkling wine despite the efforts of one of the country’s top fizz producers to lure drinkers away from demi-doux.
Speaking at the London International Wine Fair at ExCel this week, Pavel Titov, director of historic Russian sparkling wine estate Abrau-Durso, explained:

“When I joined the company we had 34 different labels in our range. My first decision was to scale it right back and discontinue half of the wines.

“The aim was to get rid of all our demi-doux and demi-sec styles, as I believe brut is the way forward, but this didn’t make commercial sense as Russian consumers are still stuck on sweeter sparklers.

“I wanted to try and change the market trends, but the love of sweeter wines is so deeply ingrained in Russia that it’s hard to influence age-old drinking habits,” he said.

Titov did reveal however that mindsets were starting to change, and that sales of brut are currently the fastest growing within the company, while demi-doux (containing up to 45g of residual sugar) remains Abrau-Durso’s best seller.
“Half of our production is demi-doux at the moment in order to satisfy demand, while we make 35% brut and around 15% demi-sec – people tend to buy the extremes in Russia, either really dry or really sweet,” Titov told db.

 

Read on …

Champagne and the use of oak.

Champagne and the use of oak.

 

While there is no consensus on the use of oak in Champagne production, Michael Edwards considers when it can have a beneficial effect
NOT SO long ago, a sure-fire way of generating a heated argument between winemakers in Champagne (as in Chablis) was to talk about the virtues and pitfalls of making their best, purest wine in oak. There’s one fine grower in a grand cru village, a charming and highly educated man, who grows apoplectic at the thought of his precious Champagne being sullied by a single wooden stave. Certainly since the late 1960s, stainless steel has become the overwhelmingly preferred medium of fermentation in Champagne – because in tank, control of the grape’s journey into wine is complete and it’s easier to use. By the early 1990s, only a few perfectionists led by Krug, Bollinger and Selosse stayed true to their barrels and casks.
Fruits of the forest

How things change. Twenty years on, it’s reckoned that about 100 Champagne producers use oak in one form or other: to ferment the wine, partially or fully, to age the reserve wines or, easily forgotten, when making the wine for the dosage – a crucial skill.

Read on …

 

Moet & Chandon, a French champagne house and co-owner of the luxury goods company Moët-Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH), has rolled out the 2004 vintage of Dom Perignon.
The first vintage of Dom Perignon was produced in 1921 and since then the company has released 40 Dom Perignon till 2004.

The 2004 wine possesses aromas of almond and cocoa on the nose and white fruit with hints of dried flowers, toasted notes and round finish, reported Harpers.

 

Read on …

White from white.

 

Much as we admire the op art of Bridget Riley, the films of Francois Truffaut and the frocks of Mary Quant, sometimes we grow tired of black and white. Two decidedly colorful champagne styles have overstated their case for decades. Champagne labelled blanc de blancs literally means ‘’white from whites” which is to indicate the wine is a white colour made from white grapes. Actually the wines should be dubbed jaune de verts because they are pale yellow and made from green hued grapes. By law in Champagne, blanc de blancs can only be produced from chardonnay and most other sparkling wine producers around the world follow this tradition as well.

Blanc de blancs is the new kid in Champagne, having been around only about 85 years of Champagne’s three century history. The first blanc de blancs was produced in 1920 by Eugèn-Aimé Salon, the founder of the highly collectible house of Salon. Two decades later, Taittinger launched its beloved blanc de blancs, Comtes de Champagne, and the rest is history. Blanc de blancs is now produced by most of the famed Champagne houses including Billecart-Salmon, Deutz, Charles Heidsieck, Jacquesson, G.H. Mumm, Bruno Paillard, Philipponat, Pol Roger, Louis Roederer and Ruinart amongst others on the Hong Kong market. Salon and Krug (Krug Clos du Mesnil) produce full-bodied blanc de blancs, but otherwise expect blanc de blancs to be light, dry and elegant. Its ethereal character and graceful finesse makes blanc de blancs a superb aperitif and ideal partner with seafood and fish. But don’t drink these wines when young as they’ll take the enamel off your teeth. Blanc de blancs requires at least 2 fashion cycles to mature, developing admirable character and complexity about 8-10 years from their vintage date.

 

Read on …

3 Glasses a week improves your memory.

3 Glasses a week improves your memory.

 

Champagne usually marks a memorable occasion for most of us – but scientists are now claiming three glasses a week can help to ensure it’s a memory that lasts.

Researchers say that a healthy dose of bubbly can help against brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia.

Jeremy Spencer, a biochemistry professor at Reading University, said anyone over 40 would be wise to drink two or three glasses a week.

‘Dementia probably starts in the 40s and goes on to the 80s,’ he said.

‘It is a gradual decline and so the earlier people take these beneficial compounds in champagne, the better.’

His team say the source is a compound called phenolic acid, found in the black grapes, Pinot noir and Pinot meunier, both of which are used for champagne.

 

Read on …

No more being blond!

No more being blond!

 

Researchers serve bubbly to lab rats and see improved memory; two studies look for links between alcohol and cancer

Champagne may bubble with more than deliciousness. According to research from a team at the Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy department of the University of Reading in the United Kingdom, organic acids in the French sparkling wine actually increase brainpower.

In their report, published in the journal Antioxidants & Redox Signaling, the authors explain that research showing certain chemicals in foods can improve memory is extensive, but there is a lack of data on phenolic acids. The team served Champagne (equivalent to a glass per day for people) to lab rats for six weeks and found the rodents showed an improvement in spatial working memory, thanks to improved cell-cycle regulation in the cortex and hippocampus, the part of the brain that controls learning and memory.

Lead researcher Dr. Giulia Corona said the tests show promise for humans as well. “Daily supplementation with a low-to-moderate doses of Champagne for six weeks led to an improvement in memory,” Corona told Wine Spectator, “indicating phenolic compounds in Champagne may interact directly with nerve cells, improve the communication between cells and encourage nerves that carry electrical signals in the brain to regenerate.”

Read on …

 

rip

 

 

The wine business continues to do things no one expects, and the latest Champagne sales numbers are a striking indication of what’s going’s on.

This French wine service story is stunning in its conclusions: “Champagne was dominant 10 to 15 years ago, but the world has changed.”

The story, though written for the European market, is well worth reading because it documents the trend we’re been talking about here for several years (and not just because I’m trying to put together The Cheap Wine Book). Today, when consumers have a choice between two quality products, they’re more likely than ever to buy on price. Champagne exports declined 2.8 percent last year,… read on

 

Also read:

Kim Kardashian.

Kim Kardashian.

 

From Sir Mick Jagger to Kim Kardashian, or Jay-Z to Leonardo DiCaprio, find out the preferred Champagne brand of famous figures.

Whether it’s wracking up huge bar bills, celebrating birthdays or preparing for a concert, Champagne is linked with luxury, celebrations and festivities and is commonly the drink of choice for celebrities.

Having previously revealed the favourite drinks of world leaders, poets and even despots, you can now find out what is the favourite Champagne brand for a range of celebrities.

Unsurprisingly, these well-known personalities have expensive taste…

Read on …