Pommery Cuvee Louise 1999
Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
Cuvee Louise 1999 comes in her customary yellow dress with almost golden nuances, proof of the great maturity of the grapes from which she was crafted. Numerous aromas are unleashed in various registers ranging from mature red berries, over notes of beeswax and freshly dried acacia to flourishes of quince pate, all of them set off by a flourish of minerality that imbues this Louise with generosity and roundness.
On the palate, the overall sensation is clear and without artifice. This champagne encompasses the freshness and finesse of silk enhanced by the reassuring warmth of velvet.
Wine Spectator - "This folds smoky nut and mineral notes with flavors of white peach, orange peel, verbena and spice. Shows good energy and focus, with zesty acidity driving through to the finish, which echoes a pretty floral note. Drink now through 2018."
Wine & Spirits - "Austere up front, this wine's tight floral scents open to a splash of color in the finish, as vivid as a 1960s Marimekko print. The lasting impression is bold and creamy. Decant it for seared scallops and truffled mashed potatoes."
Wine Enthusiast - "Louise is always a light wine, almost feathery, and this 1999, now mature, maintains this style. It is delicate, its acidity just touched with toast and hints of citrus zest underneath. It doesn’t have a long future, so enjoy now."
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Champagne Pommery Winery
Pommery has always been avant-garde, but moderness would mean nothing without tradition. Tradition and savoir-faire, the art of blending just the right mixture of crus to create a champagne that is luminous, light, tender and lively. Such is the legacy handed down by Madame Pommery from generation to generation. It is all part of the Pommery style - natural elegance. View all Champagne Pommery Wines
About ChampagneChampagne is both a region and a method. The wines come from the northernmost vineyards in France and the name conjures an image like no other can. An 18th Century Benedictine monk named Dom Perignon is said to be the first to blend both varietals and vintages, making good wines not only great, but also special and unique to their winemaker. Today, nearly 75% of Champagne produced is non-vintage and made up by a blend of several years' harvests.
All Champagnes must be made by a strictly controlled process called "Méthode Champenoise." The grapes are pressed and fermented for the first time. The blending phase follows and the wine is bottled and temporarily capped. Then comes the second fermentation, a blend of sugar and yeast is added and, this time, the carbon dioxide is kept inside the bottle. This process leaves a great deal of sediment that is extracted through a process of "racking" or "riddling." The bottles are progressively turned upside down until all the sediment is collected in the neck. The necks are then frozen and the sediment is "disgorged." After this phase, the winemaker may decide to add sugar to sweeten the wine. Finally the wine is corked. Some wines move through this process in a couple of months, while others are aged after the riddling phase to build greater complexity and depth.
Champagnes range from dry, "Brut," to slightly sweet, "Demi-Sec." Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes are used in Champagne blends, but "Blancs de Noirs" is made entirely of Pinot Noir and "Blancs de Blanc" is made from only Chardonnay grapes. The high acidity achieved by the northern location is crucial to the balance and structure of these wines.
Not every year is a "vintage" declared. In years when it is not, the wines are blended with the produce from other years to create the non-vintage blend, the house style that remains constant from year to year. But in a great vintage year, champagne houses will bottle by itself the unblended year's produce, and use other portions as "reserve" wines to supplement and enrich the non-vintage blend. A vintage champagne can age quite gracefully, and gain complexity just like any other great still wine.
Mild cheeses like gruyere and shellfish pair nicely with Champagne. Also, oysters and Champagne is a popular combination. A full-flavored vintage Champagne can go with almost any meal.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.