I am pleased to announce that the new vintage of Taittinger’s Comtes de Champagne Rosé has just been released this morning.
Comtes de Champagne Rosé has been an impressive cuvée for some considerable time. Today, it comprises 30% Chardonnay, all Grand Cru, from notable sites in the Côte des Blancs, which is blended with 70% Pinot Noir, again all Grand Cru, sourced from the Montagne de Reims. 12% of the Pinot Noir component comes from the Cru of Bouzy, often praised for the quality of its Pinot, and it is this component that is blended in the form of a red wine. In recent vintages, I have been struck by the quality of the fruit in Taittinger’s flagship rosé, and it is unsurprising to see nearly every commentator or critic comment on the vinous nature of this wine.
The 2009 vintage is widely regarded as a warm year that delivered admirably ripe fruit. May, June, and July were all quite cool and fresh, but it was a hot and dry August that accelerated the ripeness and applied the signature to the vintage. September started with a few days of heavy rain, before glorious late summer conditions returned. The Taittinger team started harvesting on the 8th September, concluding on the 21st. The 2009s, in general, are a touch softer than the preceding 2008s and a little more ample than the finely chiselled 2007s.
Today, this cuvée is avidly followed by clients who recognise the quality and the value it offers. After all, the luxury cuvée Champagne market incorporates many higher priced examples than the Taittinger Comtes de Champagne.
To date, very few critics have tasted the 2009, something that continues to surprise me in the coordinated world of Champagne releases. William Kelley scored both the 2008 and 2007 at 96 points on robertparker.com, whereas Antonio Galloni showed a marked preference for the 2007 with a 97-point score, over and above the 2008 at 93 points. One of the only critics to have published a note on the latest release is James Suckling, who saw fit to award a lofty 99-point score. As ever, I am never sure of the numbers when it comes to his scores, or their value, but the actual comments are worth a read as I think they convey the nature of the 2009.