Writing about a Maison such important as Louis Roederer, for the Champagne area, is an exercise not without difficulties, since it is one of the most famous in the absolute sense and the risk of a fruitless mythologizing is always around the corner. It all begins in 1776 when Mr Dubois with his sons establishes the homonimous winery Dubois Père & Fils, in which arrives from Alsace, as a collaborator, Nicolas Schreider, who later decides to take over the property. Having no children, Nicolas accepts, as his assistant, his nephew Louis who, upon his death, inherits the company by renaming it Louis Roederer (a Schreider frenchification).
From the beginning Louis, proving to have an uncommon vision, undertakes a policy against the current style of the time, buying selected vineyards in the best Grand Cru and Premiers Cru between the Montagne de Reims, the Vallée de la Marne, the Côte des Blancs. In a context in which all the importance is given to the Maison’s ability to transform in the best way, during vinification, the grapes purchased, Louis takes care to study his soils, discover the characteristics of each, and obtain grapes in perfect condition to give life to his Champagne.
Since then this winery has remained constantly owned by the Roederer family, starting from the son of Louis, Louis II (the inventor of the famous cuvée Cristal), up to the present day, with Frédéric Rouzaud, the representative of the seventh generation, firmly at his command. The 240-hectare estate is divided into 410 parcels, always vinified separately, in order to preserve the specificity of each, and also to allow the exact traceability of each individual lot of wine. The own grapes cover 70% of the annual requirements of the winery, while the remaining 30% is purchased by historic and proven trustworthy growers who cultivate their grapes (as does the same House) with a rigid biological approach that, recently, began to include also principles of biodynamic agriculture.
In the range produced, the Brut Premier, a cuvée of Pinot Noir (40%), Chardonnay (40%) and Pinot Meunier (20%), is of crucial importance, being the champagne produced with the largest circulation, as well as the first business card of the winery, a product worth emphasizing the incredible relationship between the highest quality and the overall affordable price. This is the only wine that also uses conferred grapes (about 40%), which ferment and perform malolactic steel, together with those owned, which do not, a small percentage of which (10%) ferments in wood. The blend is completed, for a third, with vins de réserve of 6-7 different vintages, which rest in a large casket on the first underground floor of the cellar, in an environment from temperature and humidity constantly under control. Once bottled, the wine rests three years on the lees, then is disgorged and filled with the appropriate liqueur d’expédition (9.5 gr./lt.). Another three months of aging in bottle and the wine is ready for marketing.
This bottle, launched on the market in April 2020 and based mainly on the 2015 vintage, has a brilliant straw yellow color, accompanied by numerous and elegant bubbles. The bouquet is dominated by nectarine, Abate pear, kumquat and fragrant croissants, with a side of candied citron, hawthorn, Normandy butter and custard, with a final boisée and damp chalk hint. The taste is rich and harmonic, with perlage that gives an elegant sense of creaminess and a hint of softness, immediately rebalanced by the freshness balsamic-citric, all combined with the return of citrus, croissant and boisée that accompany the sip up to a good length closing.
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