champagne mimosa punch

champagne mimosa punch

champagne mimosa punch

French wine

Champagne

Champagne is the name of the most famous sparkling wine in the world, sold under the protection of the Champagne AOC appellation (according to European laws) and produced in the French region of the same name using the traditional champagne method.


By the way: the name “Champagne” is a derivative of the Latin Campania, i.e. a reference to the similarity with the hilly landscape of the same name countryside in southern Italy.

The main grape varieties are chardonnay, pinot noir, pinot mene (this trio of varieties was called the “champagne blend”).

champagne mimosa punch

Previously, the word “champagne” called a variety of sparkling wines from around the world. Now, as a result of long and bitter disputes and evidence, it is a protected name, the use of which is restricted and strictly controlled.

Champagne Tasting

champagne mimosa punch

The success of champagne, like sparkling wine, of course – the result of a number of complex factors and circumstances. But we can distinguish three key points that can be stated with confidence when it comes to champagne:

Legendary and passionately loved by us bubbles that set it apart from the “boring” still wines (“still” – the wine antonym of “sparkling”)

champagne mimosa punch

Price, price, price. Champagne is expensive, which gives it an additional aura of election.

Two centuries of virtuoso marketing and masterful work with a grateful audience

Champagne lies on the northern border of the world winemaking, with average annual temperatures lower than in any other wine-making region of France. In such a cold climate, the growing season is rarely warm enough to produce ordinary wine.

Even in the mild years, the grapes in Champagne are distinguished by outstanding acidity characteristic of extreme climatic zones. And only thanks to the discovery of secondary fermentation was it possible to create a style of wine that can cope with it and even turn it to its advantage.

Pinot Noir, Pinot Menee and Chardonnay are the main grape varieties used in the production of champagne and sparkling wines from other countries imitating it.

Few other varieties are known to anyone that are allowed in the production of modern champagne: Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Arban, and Pt Melle.

However, in practice they are attracted in very modest quantities. All seven varieties are used, for example, in the champagne Laherte Freres Les 7.

Les 7 Champagne Label

The choice of specific varieties for champagne was not a deliberate decision or great providence. Once the varieties cultivated here a great many. But gradually, over the centuries, their list narrowed down.

As in the case of most French wines, the terroir of Champagne has played its part especially the climate – it was he who dictated the final list of grape varieties that should be grown in this area.

Pinot Noir, Pinot Menee and Chardonnay are included in a very limited list of varieties that can give a decent result in the damp, cold climate of northern France, therefore their prevalence in the region is quite natural.

It is curious that Dom Perignon – a monk who is mistakenly credited with inventing champagne – was, according to historical evidence, a supporter of the preference for red-skinned varieties of white. His argument was that Pinot Noir wine is less prone to re-fermentation, which at the time was a completely uncontrollable part of champagne winemaking.

Champagne and Caviar: Love in French

When Europeans recognized black caviar as a delicacy (and it happened at the beginning of the last century, of course, Champagne became the “legitimate” companion of black caviar. Since then, champagne and black caviar are perceived as a classic wine-gastronomic union and a symbol of luxury. Speaking of ideal compatibility wines with food in general, two most successful options can be noted: a) champagne and food are ideally combined in their characteristics and seem to melt into each other; b) everything works in contrast, i.e. characteristics are opposite, but complement each other perfectly. Again, a classic example is black caviar. For its fatty and brackish taste, champagne adds acid and freshness. A spoon of caviar – a sip of Krug, another of caviar – more champagne … Endless pleasure: you take one sip with bubbles – and your palate is again ready to accept the caviar. To achieve the perfect balance of balance between champagne and caviar, full-bodied wine should be served, which maintains its salty taste. Only the best wines will be an ideal partner of caviar: Cuvee Dom Perignon (Moet & Chandon), La Grande Dame (Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin), Krug Grande Cuvee, Cristal (Louis Roederer), Sir Winston Churchill (Pol Roger), Grand Siecle (Laurent- Perrier), Clos de Goisses (Philopponnat) and other special cuves and millezyme.

Each of the champagne varieties has its own characteristics and strengths.

Pinot Noir builds the “body” of the wine, bringing a lower spectrum of aromas with meaty hues.

Pinot Menese gives good acidity and a certain fruitiness, which is especially pronounced in young wines. In addition, its ovaries appear later, and it matures earlier than Pinot Noir, which makes it less at risk of rotting during the spring rains and loss of harvest from autumn frosts.

Chardonnay plays the role of responsible for the elegance and subtlety of champagne, for some creamy softness and characteristic tones of stone fruit.

The first wines produced in Champagne – more than a thousand years ago – were not the same as we know them today. These were mostly pale red still wines, mostly from dark-skinned varieties. Clearly, they were very far from the modern style of our favorite champagne.

To maintain an established style of champagne at home, they use an assemblage – a mixture of wine materials from different years of harvest (for non-milleSim champagne) from different vineyards (or plots of a single vineyard). Changing the proportions of assembled wines, the manufacturer achieves a smooth result from year to year, while preserving the taste and aroma of his champagne as it is loved by its consumers.

Depending on how exactly a particular champagne is made, it belongs to one or another type that determines its style.

The main styles of champagne vary in:

Color (white or pink)

Degrees of dryness

Varietal composition

Accessories specific year (vintage) or different years of harvest.

White champagne

It can be made only from white varieties, then it is called blanc de blancs. “White out white.” Or only from dark-skinned ones, – then this is blanc de noirs, i.e. “White of black.” If the wine is made from a mixture of red and white varieties, then this is just white champagne – Blanc.

Pink champagne

Rose (Champagne Rose) is made either by mixing red base wine with white (champagne is the rarest exception among rose wines of France, which is allowed such a maneuver), or by fermenting red grapes in contact with the peel (the traditional way of producing rose wines).

Both white and pink champagne wines can be of varying degrees of sweetness, depending on the amount of sugar added to it before the final closure. (see dosage)

Degrees of sweetness of champagne

Sweet (Doux) 50+ g / l

Semi Sweet (Demi-sec) 33–50 g / l

Dry (Sec) 17–35 g / l

Extra dry (Extra-Sec) 12–20 g / l

Brut 5–15 g / l

Extra Brut (Extra Brut) 3–6 g / l

Brut Nature / Zero dosage (Brut Nature / Zero dosage) 0–3 g / l

Champagne Grand Cru and Premier Cru

Grand Cru and Premier Cru is a champagne that is made from grapes grown on the best and most rated vineyards in the region. However, the importance of the brand in Champagne is so great that the name of the producer – champagne at home (Maison) – overshadows both the appellations and titles such as the Grand Cru and Premiere Cru.

Vintage champagne

Vintage Champagne Label

In most cases, champagne has no indication of the vintage (year of harvest) on the label, and in price / wine lists may be marked as NV (Non-Vintage). The production of wine from a mixture of different crops is justified by the uneven quality of crops from year to year, due to the difficult climate. Mixing yields from different years allows you to smooth out the “subsidence” as unsuccessful years.

However, if the year turned out to be particularly successful, and there is an opportunity to produce exceptional wine, many houses produce vintage champagne (fr. Millesime, milleSimnoe), indicating millezim – aka vintage (i.e. crop year) – on labels.

Such champagne is produced according to more stringent rules, including longer mandatory aging, and costs more than regular champagne of the same brand.

In addition to the weather conditions of a particular year and the characteristics of grape varieties, Champagne has another bright distinguishing feature – the one that is reflected in the name of the region.

In other words, we are talking about the soil and reliefs of Champagne. Its landscape spreads smooth hills over the white limestone of the Paris Basin. This famous chalky ground is different from the limestones of other French regions: it is smaller and porous.

A looser structure means greater availability of soil minerals to the roots of the vine and better drainage. Those. on the one hand, there is no risk of waterlogging, on the other hand, the root system has the ability to actively develop and go deep into, ensuring a stable water supply to the vine.

Champagne regions

Even within a fairly uniform regional terroir, areas with different mesoclimates and soil composition are distinguished, which makes some of them more suitable for the top three grape varieties.

Cote des Blancs (Cote des Blancs), justifying its name, is the best for Chardonnay vineyards.

Montagne de Reims and the Marne Valley (Vallee de la Marne) are ideal for Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier.

In addition to the main appellation for sparkling wine Champagne (AOC), there are two more in the region – for still wines:

Coteaux Champenois, mostly red wines

Rose des Riceys, rose wine

Champagne making

Champagne production begins in much the same way as other wines, but then there is a unique stage – the re-fermentation of the finished wine in the bottle, due to the newly added yeast and sugar. At this stage bubbles form – a sparkling champagne symbol.

After aging on the yeast sediment for at least a year, champagne must be kept in the cellar for at least another 3 months after its removal (this process is called de-burning) before it goes on sale (at least 24 months for vintage wines).

Champagne and Caviar: Love in French

When Europeans recognized black caviar as a delicacy (and it happened at the beginning of the last century, of course, Champagne became the “legitimate” companion of black caviar. Since then, champagne and black caviar are perceived as a classic wine-gastronomic union and a symbol of luxury. Speaking of ideal compatibility wines with food in general, two most successful options can be noted: a) champagne and food are ideally combined in their characteristics and seem to melt into each other; b) everything works in contrast, i.e. characteristics are opposite, but complement each other perfectly. Again, a classic example is black caviar. For its fatty and brackish taste, champagne adds acid and freshness. A spoon of caviar – a sip of Krug, another of caviar – more champagne … Endless pleasure: you take one sip with bubbles – and your palate is again ready to accept the caviar. To achieve the perfect balance of balance between champagne and caviar, full-bodied wine should be served, which maintains its salty taste. Only the best wines will be an ideal partner of caviar: Cuvee Dom Perignon (Moet & Chandon), La Grande Dame (Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin), Krug Grande Cuvee, Cristal (Louis Roederer), Sir Winston Churchill (Pol Roger), Grand Siecle (Laurent- Perrier), Clos de Goisses (Philopponnat) and other special cuves and millezyme.

champagne mimosa punch

champagne mimosa punch

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