Founded in 1776, and property of the same family since 1819, Champagne Louis Roederer is today one of the last major champagne houses to be an independent family affair. The annual production of its wines (Brut Premier, Carte Blanche, Brut Vintage, Rosé Vintage, Blanc de Blancs, Cristal, Cristal Rosé) represents just over three million bottles, distributed to 100 countries worldwide. In 1974, almost 200 years after the establishment of the Champagne house of Louis Roederer and 100 years after the creation of Cristal, Jean-Claude Rouzaud decided to create the Cristal Rosé cuvée. To achieve this, he selected old-vine Pinot Noir grapes using massal selection, which involves propagation from the vineyard’s most successful plants.
Cristal is a blend of Grand Crus from the Montagne de Reims, the Marne Valley and the Côte des Blancs. The wine is aged for six years in the cellars and left for a minimum of eight months after disgorging to attain the perfect maturity.
A continental, sunny year with a real winter that was very cold and dry followed by a glorious sun-filled summer and almost no rain in August and September. All this meant traditional vine growth, excellent health and remarkable grape ripeness for the production of dense, fruity and delicious wines. 2009 is an obvious addition to the select group of brilliant and accomplished Champagne vintages with a light, sunny character.
Yellow gold in colour with amber tints and persistent, fine and lively bubbles. Subtle on the nose with notes of citrus compote, candied apricots and honeysuckle. When aerated, notes of vanilla and cocoa bean emerge, with toasted hazelnut, hints of liquorice and even a touch of cinnamon.
The palate is structured and energetic with chalky, cherry freshness and an almost mentholated brightness. The Cristal 2009 is delicate and etherial, exceptionally focussed and full of energy.
Perfect with white fish such as monk fish, and white meats.
"Rich, radiant and totally seductive, the 2009 Cristal possesses remarkable depth and striking purity. I have often felt that Cristal is released too young, but that is not at all the case with the 2009, a Champagne that is absolutely glorious today. The ripeness of the vintage comes through in spades in the wine’s luxurious, enveloping personality. I remember tasting the vins clairs and the Cristal blend back in the spring of 2010. The finished wine is every bit as alluring as those early tastings suggested it would be. The 2009 is a superb Cristal in the making. The 2009 blend is 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay. The percentage of wine aged in oak is 15%, which is down slightly from previous vintages."
96+ Points, Antonio Gallon
"Translucent, shimmering gold indicates a wine of poised ripeness; beautiful scents of orange blossom merge with sense of great chalky terroir. The purity and sublime texture of the mouthfeel owes a lot to non-malolactic winemaking which maintains freshness after the uninterrupted warmth of summer to harvest end. Also, it also shows the essential true fruit now and for 20 years to come. Long lingering finish. A great supremely elegant Champagne. Dosage 8 g/l."
97 Points, Michael Edwards for Decanter
Champagne & Sparkling Wines
The secret to Champagne bubbles comes from the addition of a special mixture of sugar and wine called the ‘liqueur d’expedition’. This is what makes the bubbles. Sparkling wines have bubbles and high acidity and range from white, rosé to red in colour. Sparkling wines have been long associated as a celebratory beverage, but actually match with a wide variety of foods.
Ice Cold (38-48 °F / 5-9 °C)
French Fries, Chili, Oysters, Salads, Fish Tacos, Salty Foods
6 fresh oysters in their shell
½ small onion, chopped
1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
55g/2oz spinach, chopped
55g/2oz fine breadcrumbs
1. Preheat the grill to its highest setting.
2. Open the oyster shells with a shucker. Discard the top and loosen each oyster from the base of its shell. Set aside and keep cool.
3. Melt the butter in a small frying pan. Fry the onion and the parsley for 2-3 minutes, until softened.
4. Add the spinach and cook until wilted.
5. Add the breadcrumbs and cook for 1-2 minutes.
6. Place a teaspoon of spinach and breadcrumb mixture onto each half oyster shell to cover the oyster and place a small lump of butter on top of each.
7. Place the oysters onto a baking tray and transfer to the grill to cook until golden-brown.
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