Friday night flight – Taittinger Comtes de Champagne 2000, 2002 & introducing the 2004

Nov 18, 12 Friday night flight – Taittinger Comtes de Champagne 2000, 2002 & introducing the 2004

Posted by in Champagne

There are plenty of things to do on a Friday night in Soho but I couldn’t think of a better way to spend last Friday then in the company of Vitalie Taittinger¬†going through a flight of vintages of her family’s prestige Comtes de Champagne at the Groucho Club. Taittinger is one of the few big houses that is still owned (again) by the family so I find it fascinating when you get to meet someone like Vitalie or her brother Clovis (he was in town a few months ago) who share a name with a great champagne house that has been around for hundreds of years. Ok, I admit it, I am a bit of a champagne groupie ūüėČ Vitalie was in town to showcase their latest vintage of the Comtes, the 2004 but they also had on hand plenty of Comtes de Champagne 2000 and the 2002 for comparison purposes. The Comtes is a prestige blanc de blanc (100% chardonnay) made from the finest crus of the Cotes de Blancs. 5% of the blend is aged in oak which gives the wine nuance and complexity. So what did I think of the 2004? I liked it, showing a lot of fruit character, it was tasting young and is still developing in the bottle. It’s certainly got a lot of finesse on the palate and I think this champagne is just starting out. Of the 3 we tasted, the 2002 was my favourite. Finely balanced on the palate with brioche and ripe fruit notes on the nose, it was a pleasure to drink and the first one gone. We had to settle for more of the 2000 in the end. The 2000 has certainly matured into a rich champagne, very toasty on the nose and palate, it has evolved into showing dried fruits and has an earthy,savoury character to it. The Comtes de Champagne 2004 has just been released here in the UK. I was recently introduced to a new wine website, CellarvieWines. They¬†have...

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Taittinger and Indian cuisine – can it handle the spice?

Apr 30, 12 Taittinger and Indian cuisine – can it handle the spice?

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

My regular readers know of my fondness for champagne, some might say obsession, but can I be blamed when champagne is such a versatile wine? Just when I think I have found the best food matches for champagne, along comes a new combination that makes me add another feather to champagne’s cap. I was invited to dinner at Moti Mahal to see what Taittinger could do when paired with Indian cuisine as well as meet Clovis Taittinger, the next in line at Taittinger. Clovis was in town last week to show off what his family champagne can do when paired with Indian cuisine.Clovis is known as a bit of a wild man and upon meeting him, I could see why – rushing down the stairs, slightly disheveled hair with impish smile and friendly air. He’s like a French, slimmer, darker version of our Mayor, Boris Johnson – and just as amusing. He had us all chuckling within 1 minute of opening his mouth,¬† something about the Kama Sutra and champagne, I think. Anyway, Clovis went on to tell us a bit about what he thinks makes Taittinger special – the quality and consistency of their wines is their calling card. Their wines are made with a high percentage of chardonnay which they believe gives them the finesse, elegance and delicacy that one expects from Taittinger. When queried about the best years, he replied he doesn’t remember the years, just the moments. A good way out of giving a straight answer he later admitted! While nibbling on an assortment of canapes we sipped the Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blanc Brut 2000. Made from 100% grand cru chardonnay it’s a charming wine, Clovis defining it as a “dancing champagne” and if any champagne would do that, it would be the Comtes, great as an aperitif. Roasted beetroot and peanut salad with a lentil dumpling and yoghurt Chaat was served with the Taittinger Brut Prestige Ros√© NV. The sweetness of the beetroot was enhanced by...

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