In Reims, buying Champagne

I’ve been here in Reims since Friday, drawn here by my growing love of Champagne. It has been nice to explore the town a bit, and my self-imposed rule is that while I’m here, I’ll be drinking nothing but fizz. So I have been on the lookout for places to buy good Champagne. There are [...]

Video: drinking Champagne Dom Pérignon 2004 and talking fizz

So, I open a bottle of Champagne Dom Pérignon with brother in law William Beavington, and we drink it, talk about it, and have a broad-ranging discussion about Champagne more generally. The film is here.

Benoît Gouez introduces Moët et Chandon MCIII, the new prestige cuvée

On Wednesday, I met with Benoît Gouez, chef de cave of Champagne Moët et Chandon, to try their recently introduced prestige cuvée, MCIII. ‘Since the mid-1990s we’ve been thinking of creating something special,’ he says. ‘Different ideas had been offered. Then in 2000 we released 323 magnums of ‘Esprit du Siécle.’ The idea here was [...]

Champagne under £8? I review Tesco's Pol Aimé Champagne NV on camera

Tesco are currently running a 25% off 6 bottles or more of wine. This offer includes their Pol Aimé Champagne, which is currently listed at £9.95. So with the multi-bottle discount, this brings the price down to £7.46. This makes it the cheapest Champagne I’ve seen for sale in the UK for practically ever. Champagne [...]

Champagne Dom Perignon P2 1998

It’s hard to taste a famous wine with a completely clear mind. Sometimes you are wary about giving too high a score: would you have liked it as much if it was tasted blind? Or you might knock it back a bit, just because it’s a celebrity wine. It was nice to drink this a [...]

Some reflections on ProWein 2016: bubbly Brits, grower Champagne, Canada, Provence and Grenache

ProWein is a massive wine and spirits fair, held each year in Dusseldorf, Germany. It’s enormous. 6200 exhibitors, and 55 000 trade visitors. I’ve just returned, and these are some of my impressions. But it’s impossible for any one person to be able to give anything more than a personal perspective gained by merely scratching [...]

Grower Champagne focus: Gimonnet Cuvée Fleuron 1er Cru Blanc de Blancs 2006

Had this at lunch on Thursday at the excellent Prospect restaurant in San Francisco, where sommelier Josh Thomas has put together a stunning and well priced list of fizz. I’m a big fan of the Gimonnet Cuis 1er Cru, but this is a real step up. Concentrated and lovely.

Champagne Pierre Gimonnet Cuvée Fleuron 1er Cru [...]

Hold the front page: Taittinger's Comtes 2006 is pretty good

I know this is a bit boring to report, but the Champagne Taittinger Comtes de Champagne 2006 is actually pretty good. Stunning really. The 2005 is currently drinking brilliantly (and 2005 was a difficult vintage in Champagne), but 2006 has everything there for it to be a classic. Now most of the top 2006s have [...]

The Ruinart Lighthouse: a tasting of Champagne and Chardonnay with Frédéric Panaïotis

Yesterday I visited the Ruinart Lighthouse, which is an exhibition and tasting being held at the Violin Factory near London’s South Bank. The focus of the three-storey exhibition space is on Chardonnay, with various exhibits and art works beautifully displayed.

The Lighthouse is open to consumers and tickets are still available for the next two days [...]

Champagne Krug 2002 and friends

Krug 2002 has finally been launched. On Tuesday evening a group of us gathered in a studio in Shoreditch which had, for a week, been turned into the home of Krug. It was quite pretty. Eric Lebel (above left), who’s been chef de cave here for 18 years was presenting, along with Olivier Krug and [...]