Saturday Snapshot – sneak peak at Billecart-Salmon brut blanc de blancs 2004

Apr 20, 13 Saturday Snapshot – sneak peak at Billecart-Salmon brut blanc de blancs 2004

Posted by in Champagne, Saturday Snapshot

Spring has finally sprung and this week I was in Champagne again to visit the house of Billecart-Salmon. While I was there, we were fortunate to be the first outside of the maison to taste the 2004 brut Blanc de blancs. It hasn’t been released yet as Billecart-Salmon is one of the last champagne houses to release their 2004. They felt that their 2004 was not quite ready until now. The grapes for the blanc de blancs all come from the grand cru vineyards Avize, Cramant, Mesnil and Chouilly. After the light and fluffy mousse dissipated it was followed by a very fresh, aromatic and creamy nose. Tiny, fine, silky bubbles streamed to the top, I can watch those tiny bubbles all day, they are so mesmerizing but I wasn’t distracted for too long and took a sip. A silky smooth mouthful, the bubbles really do caress your palate on the way down. Full of grapefruit and pomelo on the palate, it is very fresh but ready to be drunk now- an excellent, well balanced champagne.  However, it is a lively 2004 and definitely has a few more years left in it. It was also just so tasty, that is the best way for me to describe it, a real delight to drink. I wish we could have taken it to lunch with us but we had to leave it with its compatriots at the cellar door. I felt lucky to be tasting it before its release and I’d say that it was well worth the wait. The Billecart-Salmon 2004 brut blanc de blancs will be available in June 2013. Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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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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Video – Masterclass on the terroir of the Mosel, amongst the vines with Ernie Loosen

Aug 27, 12 Video – Masterclass on the terroir of the Mosel, amongst the vines with Ernie Loosen

Posted by in German wine, Travel, Videos

I had the pleasure of visiting Ernie Loosen earlier this summer in the Mosel Valley. We roamed around the Dr. Loosen grand cru vineyards on the slopes of the Mosel while Ernie proceeded to give a masterclass on the soils of the his and his neighbours vineyards. It was a fascinating and very informative morning. Afterwards we got to try his wines, from the entry level up to the Erdener Pralat. The previous evening we’d had some Pralat from the 80’s – fantastic whether young or old. So, without further ado, I will let Ernie do the talking about the amazing soils of the Mosel and the wines that are the result…. *warning, this video is for terroir geeks Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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