Louis Roederer Cristal Brut 2007
in mixed case $224.99
It has a golden hue with slightly orange-coloured and warm highlights.
It has impeccable, fine, regular, and dynamic bubbles.
Its classic bouquet is both elegant and discreet. The attack of juicy ripe fruits (Pear Williams) and slightly acid red fruits (redcurrants) combined with nuances of hot pastries and Tarte Tatin that have just been taken out of the oven. The wine is ready to reveal its many qualities and, after a few minutes in the glass, reveals notes of white chocolate and hazelnuts produced by the fermentation in wood of some of the wines from the 2007 harvest. This juxtaposition of aromas of ripe, acid, and sweet fruits with the more roasted notes resulting from ageing becomes more pronounced over time and produces a real impression of depth.
The attack in the mouth is concentrated and continues with mature fruits. The wine is prolonged by smoky flavours, once again creating the impression of natural depth. The textures are silky, velvety, and almost luscious; they provide perfect overtones to the wine's freshness in a luscious and sensual ensemble. Powdery and salty nuances stimulate the edges of the tongue, adding a precise and energetic quality. And the final phase of the tasting is predominantly an impression of refinement and lightness.
Long-time Chef de Caves Jean-Baptiste Lécaillon has produced yet another in a string of superb Champagnes with the 2007 Cristal. Rich, powerful and enveloping, the 2007 takes hold of all the senses and never lets up. The aromatics alone are captivating, but then the wine opens on the palate, revealing layer after layer of flavor to match a multi-dimensional, kaleidoscopic personality that will leave Champagne lovers weak at the knees. The 2007 is 58% Chardonnay and 42% Pinot Noir, which is to say a bit more Chardonnay-leaning than is the norm. The 2007 is striking today, but it should also age effortlessly for several decades. It is also without question one of the very finest new releases of the year.
Score: 97+, Antonio Galloni
Jean-Baptiste Lécaillon calls Cristal "the first terroir cuvée of the Champagne." He furthers, "It's not just Chardonnay or Pinot Noir, but the chalk that brings the ultimate finesse, length and precision of Cristal." Forty-five blocks with averaging age of 43-years-old, low-yielding vines form the base of Cristal, which is usually made of approximately 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay. Due to an early bud break (end of March) and the wet summer, the 2007 was picked at the end of August, so almost 100 days after the flowering instead of the normal 93-95 days. There is a bit less Pinot Noir than usual (57%) and accordingly, more Chardonnay (43%) in the 2007 Cristal. This Champagne comes along in a golden color and with a deep and matured, yet well-defined bouquet of ripe yellow fruits and honey notes. Full-bodied, round and very complex, the generous 2007 is a perfect mix of ripe fruit and precise minerality. It is a silky textured, pure and precise, as well as powerful and expressive Champagne. It has great tension and grip in the very long and persistent finish. Great expression of chalk. The 2007 was disgorged in 2015. The 2009 is to be released in September; the 2008 won't be in the market earlier than January 2018. Neither a 2010 nor a 2011 will be released, but a 2012.
Score: 95, Stephan Reinhardt, June 2016
Among the most iconic Champagnes, this wine always reflects its vintage. In this 2007, coming from a good, not great year, the wine is developing more quickly than is sometimes the case. It is now showing as a beautiful, balanced wine ripe with apples while also hinting at almonds and a yeasty character. The wine has such style, elegant with its fragrant acidity and complex structure.
Score: 95, Paul Gregutt, November 2015
Shows lovely texture and harmony, featuring a powerful backbone of acidity married to finely knit flavors of green pear and raspberry fruit, with hints of preserved lemon, biscuit and honey. Light spice and mineral details echo on the creamy finish. Drink now through 2030. 9,450 cases imported.
Score: 94, Alison Napjus, November 2015
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