Champagne Reviews

Which sparkle do you choose?

Rose

Have you come across champagne which can neither be classified under red nor as white? A pink hue is what characterizes this sparkling beverage, thus rendering it unique from its counterparts. It is believed that 'rose' wine came into existence long before sparkling wine made its appearance and what could validate this fact more than the full-body nature of this beverage which is strongly reminiscent of red grapes?

'Rose' is probably the most liberal amongst all types of champagne not just in terms of methods employed but also its color. Even though it is broadly referred to as pink, on being poured within the flute, the champagne could bear any of the six tinges all of which come under this hue.  Therefore, a Rose could be melon, peach, redcurrant, mango, mandarin or grapefruit pink. Don't you think that is quite a range to choose from? Or may be you could choose one of each and raise a multi-colored toast. 

According to wine makers, this variation in color is owing to the method employed for making this form of champagne. While traditional wine -makers in France rely on Saignee, or bleeding,  Vin Gris and decolorization, contemporary wine-makers employ blending, which calls for mixing of red wine with a base wine, to achieve a rose of desired color and strength.

Since the method is usually mentioned on the label, as a buyer you can actually pick a rose that best suits your personal preferences. So if you honor and respect traditions, then you might choose one that is an outcome of Saignee while the more experimental mindset can settle for a blend. 


Cuvee

'Cuvee' is a derivative of French word cuve, which in English translates into a vat or a tank and is indicative of the state of wine that matures within a vat or a tank. In the world of wine making, the meaning of the word 'cuvee' varies with  the context of the beverage for which it is being used but in most cases it is indicative of the highest quality, namely the creme de la creme, of grape juice.

When used in context of champagne, usage of the term 'cuvee' refers to traditional methods having been employed and the first 2000 liters of grape juice extracted from 4000 kg of grapes being channeled for the production of sparkling wine. Because the first juice is regarded as being the best of the lot, champagne prepared from it is a mark of luxury, prestige and pride.

There are vineyards that specialize in producing cuvee and for this they undoubtedly use the best varieties of grapes. Famous examples of Cuvee are Dom Perignon, Cristal and Cuvee Sir Winston Churchill.