The Place: The grand cru village of Bouzy in the Montagne de Reims region of Champagne.
In the end, this is the wine we (Carol and I and Ron and Lynne) drank for New Year’s Eve. It wasn’t my first choice but I am delighted we wound up with it. It was delicious and it passed my ultimate Champagne test. Ultimate Champagne test? I like to leave some Champagne in my glass after we move on to other wines (usually red) and the rest of the meal. Then I like to come back to my Champagne – after it has warmed a bit and lost some or even most of its fizz – and retaste it as wine. The note below is my “sparkling wine note” on the Clouet Rosé. As a wine (warmer and flatter), Clouet Rosé succeeds as a sort of pleasure point inside a triangle defined by red Burgundy, Champagne, and a still Rosé (maybe Sancerre). The wine is warming and satisfying and delicious while still echoing the mineral and toast thrill of Champagne with more developed red fruit and more richness. I like it even better in this more open, more developed mode.
ANDRE CLOUET Brut Rosé, Champagne, NV ($47.49)
A cuvee of 92% Pinot Noir fermented as white Champagne blended with 8% Bouzy Rouge (the famous but rare red wine from the village of Bouzy). Decidedly pink (as opposed to orangy-salmon)in color and fully sparkling. dry and fresh with light but present phenolics (from the red wine component). Supple and juicy with red fruit accented with subtle earth. It hints at exotic spice with fine perfume and a balancing core of citrus and red fruit acidity. Its toastiness emerges in the mouth. Great feel. Yum. Excellent. BearScore: 94.