Louis Roederer Brut Nature Philippe Starck Label 2006
It all began in 2003, an exceptionally sunny year, which was problematic for the northern vineyards, revealed for the first time that certain vineyards had remarkable potential in the heart of the historic Champagne hillsides on the Louis Roederer estate. Located in the heart of the calcareous clay soil hillsides of Cumieres, Hautvillers, and Vertus, which are rich in hard, coarse sandstone, this ensemble of parcels had no difficulty in resisting the heat and drought in the summer of 2003. Better still, the vineyards produced aromatic, intense, and balanced grapes.The resulting wines, which were vinified separately, parcel by parcel, are characterized by an optimal aromatic maturity, a creamy texture, and a vibrant freshness. The collaboration between Frederic Rouzaud and Philippe Starck encouraged the Louis Roederer team to be innovative - the wine was developed through discussions, words that conjure up images, ideas and concepts in a quest for the ideal champagne. Translating these discussions and words into the reality of grape cultivation and the development of the wine was a fundamental step in creating this cuvee, which continues to evolve quite naturally in complete freedom as part of a process of contemporary creation... in a perpetual quest for perfection! The quest for perfection, which places research and respect for the terroir on an equal footing, perfectly reflects Louis Roederer's philosophy: an independent Champagne House with a deep attachment to the land, as attested by its wines, which have a straightforward character, and are pure and extremely chiselled, expressing the aromas of each parcel.
Brut Nature 2006 embodies three vital concepts:
Authenticity and Truth - Emphasized by the distinctiveness of a producer's wine, resulting in an unusual and summery vintage, from a unique soil-clay and stony-characterized by optimal maturity.
Abstraction - A difficultnotion to translate into technical reality, but Roederer aims to refine and simplify their processes in various ways including harvesting the estate's vineyards on the same day; blending all the grapes directly on the press; removing minimal sludge and encouraging spontaneous fermentation; avoiding chaptalization; ensuring that 100%of the fermentation process occurs in wooden tanks; allowing the wines to age over a long period, without racking(soutirage), and ensuring they are produced in accordance with biodynamic rhythms.
Elegance - Reflected in the quest for optimal purity through a balanced proportion of about 2/3 Pinot Noir and 1/3 Chardonnay, an absence of malolactic fermentation, a soft and sensual effervescence, and no dosage.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Champagne Louis Roederer was founded in 1776 in Reims, France and is one of the rare family owned companies, which is still managed by the Roederer family. In 1833, Louis Roederer inherited the company from his uncle and renamed the company under his namesake. Under his leadership, the company rapidly grew while remaining true to their philosophy of uncompromising quality. Today, the company is under the helm of Jean-Claude Rouzaud and his son Frédéric who continue to place quality before quantity.
Champagne Louis Roederer is one of the only French champagne producers to own nearly 75 percent of the grapes in the most desirable vineyards in the Champagne. The property is located on 450 acres in the finest villages of Montagne de Reims, Côtes des Blancs, and Valleé de la Marne. Each region is selected to produce Chardonnay and Pinot Noir with the elegance needed for perfectly balanced champagne. The Louis Roederer vineyards rate an average 98 percent based on France’s statutory 100-point classification scale.
The reserve wine is then tasted and graded by a team of Roederer specialists. They choose as many as 40 different wines from several lots for the blend. For the final touch, the wine is then added in order to enhance the cuvee and guarantee consistency while retaining the champagne's characteristics.
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.’
Representing the topmost expression of a Champagne house, a vintage Champagne is one made from the produce of a single, superior harvest year. Vintage Champagnes account for a mere 5% of total Champagne production and are produced about three times in a decade. Champagne is typically made as a blend of multiple years in order to preserve the house style; these will have non-vintage, or simply, NV on the label. The term, "vintage," as it applies to all wine, simply means a single harvest year.