Cabbage in Champagne
Drinking a nice Champagne tonight that has a distinctive note of cabbage to it. It's the Asda Extra Special Vintage 2000 Brut, made by Chanoine Freres (£17.97). It's pretty serious stuff (won a Decanter gold and an IWC silver), and has a complex, toasty, cabbagey nose with savoury, yeasty complexity. The palate is concentrated, savoury and dense with nice grippy, toasty, herby flavours. Nice balance, too.
So where do the cabbagey notes come from? (They are actually much nicer than they sound, in the context of this wine.) I guess it must be a hint of reduction - something I often find in Cava, incidentally. Ordinarily, you'd want to manage your ferments so the yeasts don't produce too many of these sulfur compounds (which contribute aromas ranging from rotten eggs, through cabbage, through matchstick, to flintiness). But here, in this Champagne, they add a nice savoury richness. This is a nice fizz. Well done Asda.