There is a coppery tint to the robe. The highly luminous quality of the wine enhances the slowly rising fine bubbles. It effervesces at a steady tempo. The first aromatic impression is one of airy lightness, with floral and mineral tones. Saffron, toast and new leather then reveal themselves. The closing notes are orange blossom and red berries. It stands up very well to aeration. The initial taste is fresh and full-bodied, and the bubbles melt immediately into the wine. This wine is expansive, concentrated and bold in the mouth. The sweetness dissipates to reveal a heavier taste underpinned by clay minerality. Its intense character gives it a creamy texture.
This is a thoroughbred champagne in its origins and in its expression. With stronger qualities in its wine taste than as a sparkling drink, its power and quality improve in the flute. It has real potential and gourmet style.
It pairs ideally with the most tender of meats, such as very delicate fish, beef, lamb or veal fillets, or the best butcher’s cuts.
If exceptional had a name, it would be Champagne Alfred Gratien . Alfred Gratien champagnes are handcrafted for guaranteed quality and consistency. A few miles away from Epernay’s bustling town center, deep in the heart of a Champagne vineyard, are the Alfred Gratien champagne cellars. It was here, on Rue Maurice Cerveaux, that Alfred Gratien set up his business and created his first cuvées in 1864. For over a century and a half, Alfred Gratien champagnes have remained a family affair perpetuated by the expertise and know-how of their founder.
The house’s legacy relies on its cellar masters who were taught a trade that has been handed down from father to son for four generations now. Gaston Jaeger, the earliest first descendant, took on the role in 1905. In 1951, he passed the craft on to his son Charles, who in turn paved the way for his son Jean-Pierre to take over in 1966.
Nicolas joined his father in 1990, with the pair now having worked side-by-side for 17 years. This wonderful collaborative effort is a continuation of the inherited know-how that has been passed on for nearly a century. In 2007, Nicolas became the cellar master for Alfred Gratien Champagne in Epernay. He embodies the living memory of the Alfred Gratien house and its grand cru champagnes.
Associated with luxury, celebration, and romance, the region, Champagne, is home to the world’s most prized sparkling wine. In order to bear the label, ‘Champagne’, a sparkling wine must originate from this northeastern region of France—called Champagne—and adhere to strict quality standards. Made up of the three towns Reims, Épernay, and Aÿ, it was here that the traditional method of sparkling wine production was both invented and perfected, birthing a winemaking technique as well as a flavor profile that is now emulated worldwide.
Well-drained, limestone and chalky soil defines much of the region, which lend a mineral component to its wines. Champagne’s cold, continental climate promotes ample acidity in its grapes but weather differences from year to year can create significant variation between vintages. While vintage Champagnes are produced in exceptional years, non-vintage cuvées are produced annually from a blend of several years in order to produce Champagnes that maintain a consistent house style.
With nearly negligible exceptions, . These can be blended together or bottled as individual varietal Champagnes, depending on the final style of wine desired. Chardonnay, the only white variety, contributes freshness, elegance, lively acidity and notes of citrus, orchard fruit and white flowers. Pinot Noir and its relative Pinot Meunier, provide the backbone to many blends, adding structure, body and supple red fruit flavors. Wines with a large proportion of Pinot Meunier will be ready to drink earlier, while Pinot Noir contributes to longevity. Whether it is white or rosé, most Champagne is made from a blend of red and white grapes—and uniquely, rosé is often produce by blending together red and white wine. A Champagne made exclusively from Chardonnay will be labeled as ‘blanc de blancs,’ while ones comprised of only red grapes are called ‘blanc de noirs.’
What are the different types of sparkling rosé wine?
Rosé sparkling wines like Champagne, Prosecco, Cava, and others make a fun and festive alternative to regular bubbles—but don’t snub these as not as important as their clear counterparts. Rosé Champagnes (i.e., those coming from the Champagne region of France) are made in the same basic way as regular Champagne, from the same grapes and the same region. Most other regions where sparkling wine is produced, and where red grape varieties also grow, also make a rosé version.
How is sparkling rosé wine made?
There are two main methods to make rosé sparkling wine. Typically, either white wine is blended with red wine to make a rosé base wine, or only red grapes are used but spend a short period of time on their skins (maceration) to make rosé colored juice before pressing and fermentation. In either case the base wine goes through a second fermentation (the one that makes the bubbles) through any of the various sparkling wine making methods.
What gives rosé Champagne and sparkling wine their color and bubbles?
The bubbles in sparkling wine are formed when the base wine undergoes a secondary fermentation, which traps carbon dioxide inside the bottle or fermentation vessel. During this stage, the yeast cells can absorb some of the wine’s color but for the most part, the pink hue remains.
How do you serve rosé sparkling wine?
Treat rosé sparkling wine as you would treat any Champagne, Prosecco, Cava, and other sparkling wine of comparable quality. For storing in any long-term sense, these should be kept at cellar temperature, about 55F. For serving, cool to about 40F to 50F. As for drinking, the best glasses have a stem and a flute or tulip shape to allow the bead (bubbles) and beautiful rosé hue to show.
How long do rosé Champagne and sparkling wine last?
Most rosé versions of Prosecco, Champagne, Cava or others around the “$20 and under” price point are intended for early consumption. Those made using the traditional method with extended cellar time before release (e.g., Champagne or Crémant) can typically improve with age. If you are unsure, definitely consult a wine professional for guidance.