Introduction to Champagne
Champagne is drink of celebrations, and because it varies in price, taste, and appearance, it's important to know what you're buying. First, a sparkling wine can only be labeled 'champagne' if it originates from the champagne region in France.
There are many other sparkling wines from around the world, including some excellent English sparkling wines. Price Inspector can help you pick the perfect champagne, whether it's for a wedding, New Year's celebration, anniversary, or just for fun.
Types of champagne: Blanc de Blanc, Blanc de Noir, and Rosé
- Blanc de blanc is "white from white", and it is a white champagne from the Chardonnay white grape. They make an excellent apértif or first course pairing, offering a light, dry taste.
- Blanc de noir is a white champagne, but it is made from black grape varieties: Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. Blanc de noir champagnes are fuller bodied, deep yellow-gold. They work best with full-flavored foods, such as meats and cheese.
- Rosé (pink) champagnes are produced by either adding Pinot Noir to the base wine or pressing the grape skins prior to fermentation.
Champagnes are also classified by their level of added sugar: brut, dry, extra dry, cuvee, sec, doux. Brut champagne is the driest, and it is generally considered 'traditional' champagne. However, the sweeter varieties offer a good alternative for different tastes or food pairings.
Brands of Champagne
Excellent brands to consider when purchasing champagne include Deutz (Grande Marque), Bollinger, Cristal, Dom Perignon, Mercier, Moet et Chandon, Mumm, Perrier Jouet and Veuve Cliquot.