A little something for Valentine’s Day, Billecart Salmon Brut Rose

Feb 04, 13 A little something for Valentine’s Day, Billecart Salmon Brut Rose

Posted by in Champagne

Alright lovers, it’s that time of year again – Valentine’s Day!! I know, I know, many of you may be rolling  your eyes but let’s face it, if you don’t do something on Feb.14th, you’re going to be in big trouble with your significant other. Going out to dinner is VERY romantic on Valentines Day, you and a 1000 other couples all smushed into a restaurant with that special (overpriced) ‘Valentines Day Menu’- where all the tables have been converted into ‘romantic’ two tops, situated cheek by jowl with red and pink streamers, cupids floating overhead and roses galore as decoration. Rather than share your one big romantic evening of the year with everyone else, wouldn’t you rather have a quiet, un-rushed, candle lit dinner at home with your sweetie? And, we all know no evening dedicated to Eros would be complete without rosé champagne (well, you can’t ditch all the accoutrements that go with V-Day). To help you out, Billecart-Salmon are running a special giveaway this year. If you buy a full sized bottle of their Brut Rosé, Blanc de blanc Grand Cru or Vintage 2004, they’ll throw in a half bottle of the Brut Rosé just to keep the magic of the evening going. This offer is valid from 1st to 14th of February at participating retailers (subject to availability, first come, first served).  I can tell you that Berry Bros & Rudd, Hedonism Wines and Fortnum & Mason are just a few of the retailers involved along with various others around the UK. To see the full list of retailers giving away half bottles of Billecart Rosé, click here. I have always enjoyed Billecart’s Brut Rosé, a delicate champagne with fine bubbles, an aromatic nose and delicate but divine flavours of fresh red fruits, good as an aperitif or perhaps a dessert of fresh strawberries topped with whipped cream – I’m sure you can find other uses for any left-over whipped cream later in the evening…like, putting it in your coffee 😉 Happy Valentine’s Day from The Wine...

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Billecart-Salmon Brut Reserve for New Year’s (or anytime, really)

Dec 28, 12 Billecart-Salmon Brut Reserve for New Year’s (or anytime, really)

Posted by in Champagne

Going on three weeks now here in Thailand with no champagne, not sure if I’m going to be able to hold out until New Year’s Eve for a glass  of bubbly.  That is something that no New Year’s Eve celebration would complete without at the very least  something sparkly to toast in the coming year. One of the champagnes I had a glass of before I left was the Billecart Salmon Brut Reserve NV to remind me of what I would be missing while I was away. Although I do adore Billecart vintages and their Sous Bois is another of their champagnes that seems to be a bit different everytime I try it, their NV is one of my stand-bys. Their current non vintage is a blend made up equally of 1/3 of each of chardonnay ,  pinot noir and pinot meunier and they are all come from either Premier Cru or Grand Cru vineyards, which means that they are some of the best grapes around. Having only 8g/l of residual sugar doesn’t make this an especially dry champagne but it certainly does have a freshness and crispness that makes drinking it such a delight. One thing I always find in Billecart is a delicious toastiness along with a long citrus finish. I especially like this one as an aperitif, it goes down very easy I’m not sure if we’ll be able to get our hands on Billecart Salmon here on the island of Koh Lanta, so if you’re lucky enough to have this on New Year’s Eve, have a drink for me. Cheers! Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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Lunch/Launch of Billecart-Salmon Elisabeth Rose 2002

It’s not every year that Billecart-Salmon releases it’s Cuvee Elisabeth Salmon rosé but lucky for us they’ve deemed the 2002 ready to drink now. The Cuvee Elisabeth is named for wife of the founder of the Billecart house, Nicolas Francois. Nicolas has his own prestive cuvee and in 1988, Billecart decided to name their prestige rosé in tribute to the co-founder of the house, Elisabeth Salmon. The 2002 is 50/50 chardonnay/pinot noir blend, coming from Grand Cru vineyards. 7% of the pinot noir used is the still wine used to give the champagne its copper coloured hue. The berries used to make the still wine are hand selected to achieve that beautiful, bright colour that this rosé champagne sports. Colin Palmer, Managing Director of Billecart-Salmon UK, told us over lunch that the rosé is only released when Francois Domi, chief winemaker of Billecart believes it’s ready. For this reason, the cuvee is not released in chronological order which is why not all the vintages are available. Even when they are released, it’s made in such small quantities that they quickly sell out. It’s so special that it’s even packaged in it’s own specially designed box. Billecart had chosen Morton’s Club in Mayfair to kick off the launch and we were treated to a delicious lunch paired with some of their other champagnes before the big reveal. We had the Extra Brut Non-vintage, as an aperitif, of which I made a video with Winebird TV, click here to see the video. It was still delightful and great with the anchovy tapanade served with breadsticks.The Extra Brut is a zero dosage champagne but doesn’t suffer from being overly acidic or tart as the fruit is perfectly balanced. Aromatic and fresh with complex aromas of brioche anad dried fruit, on the palate – biscuit notes and flavourful white fruits, great to drink on its own.  The Billecart-Salmon Blanc de blanc followed, which was great with the crab salad starter. A whole seabass was roasted and presented at the table to...

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Glass style definitely affects the taste of champagne

I recently was invited by Helena Nicklin to join her in a champagne tasting of Billecart-Salmon’s NV Extra Brut and their 2004 Vintage champagnes. The intriguing difference in this tasting was that we would be using Billecart-Salmon’s specially designed wine glasses and compared the champagnes in both a traditional flute and Billecart’s specially designed glasses. Helena did a very good job of describing the technical notes on the tasting which you can find here. We also did a video tasting of the two different champagnes, and whether or not glass style has any affect. See the videos below… Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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Billecart-Salmon at Massimo’s Restaurant and Oyster Bar

May 28, 12 Billecart-Salmon at Massimo’s Restaurant and Oyster Bar

Posted by in Champagne, Food and Wine, France, restaurants

Walking into Massimo’s Restaurant is quite an impressive experience. I was not expecting the high ceilings, supported by striped white and black columns or the polished mahogany wood and leather banquettes, or the cool marble floors gleaming under the art deco inspired sleek chandeliers. In a way, it seemed like the restaurant should have been located in one of the grand train stations built in the US during the 1930’s, New York’s Grand Central Station or perhaps L.A.’s Union Station, both springing to mind. Massimo’s has a raw bar and it was there that I was directed to take part in a champagne and seafood matching event. Massimo prides itself on their signature dish, crudo, literally meaning “raw fish” in Italian, they are very passionate about using traditional Mediterranean methods and ingredients in all their dishes. And which champagne to pair with the crudo? One of the best, of course. That evening we were being treated to a selection of Billecart-Salmon’s champagnes. I’ve always enjoyed Billecart-Salmon’s champagnes and find that they are great food wines. They’ve been making champagne since 1818 and today the seventh generation are now running the house. We were seated at the serpentine marble topped bar and watched the raw bar chef quickly chuck the oysters in front of us, while we sipped on the Billecart-Salmon Blanc de blanc Grand Cru vintage. Paired with 3 native oysters, the Roch Loch Lyne, Colchester and Irish Rock, the champagne took on a different character with each oyster. The monsterously big Roch Loch Lyne was a big and meaty and the delicate Grand Cru was almost lost amongst the saline character of the oyster. The Colchester fared better, there being more of a balance and a crisp iodine note coming from the champagne. Lastly, the Irish Rock seemed to pair best with the champagne, a perfect balance of soil and sea, good minerality showing off from both and excellent balance. Neither seemed to outshine the other and complemented each other nicely: “Those are...

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