Champagne Billecart-Salmon Brut Rosé – The Best NV Rosé Champagne?

I believe this is quite possibly the best non-vintage brut rosé Champagne produced at this price point. It combines finesse and balance into a cuvée that is perfect as an aperitif, but is also a charming and worthy partner for a variety of  fish and salads. I’ll have mine with some civiche, thank you. The color in this beauty comes from a small amount of Pinot Noir vinified as red wine, which is then added to the white wine comprised of Chardonnay, and Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir vinified as white wine. This technique is typical of rosé Champagne production, although rosé wines can also be made using the saignée method which employs a partial bleed of color (and flavor) during maceration from the skins of Pinot Noir, or other red grapes. This wonderful rose is also produced in half bottles and magnums. The full size (750ml) bottle can usually be found in fine wine shops and fine dining establishments, although due to its popularity among Champagne fans, you may run into out-of-stock situations from time to time. The price, which can vary quite a bit around the United States, is typically around $75 for the 750ml. I was recently fortunate to find a half bottle at a good price at Astor Wines & Spirits in New York City. For history and trivia buffs, the name Billecart-Salmon came from the marriage (almost 200 years ago) of Nicolas Francois Billecart and Elisabeth Salmon. www.champagne-billecart.fr/eng/maison/maison.htm

 

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~ by Thomas on February 12, 2008.

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