Pol Roger Cuvée ‘Sir Winston Churchill’ Brut Vintage 2006
Grape Varietals: Pinot Noir & Chardonnay blend.
Growing Region: Epernay - France
*Chef de Cave: Dominique Petit - *(retired March 2018)
Chef de Cave: Damien Cambres - (since April 2018)
5 Stars ★★★★★
The relationship between Champagne Pol Roger and Sir Winston Churchill dates back to a luncheon given by the British Ambassador to France after the liberation of Paris in 1944. At which was served the stunning 1928 vintage Pol Roger. Also attending was Odette Pol-Roger, with whom they had an instant rapport. A friendship of families which continued until Churchill’s death in 1965; and which is still as strong to this day.
This Prestige Cuvée is a homage to Sir Winston Churchill; mindful of the qualities he desired in his champagne: robust, full-bodied and with relative maturity. The exact blend is a closely guarded family secret - though Pinot Noir dominates, providing structure, breadth and a robust nature, while Chardonnay contributes elegance and finesse. Composed exclusively from ‘Grand Cru’ Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vineyards which were under vine during Churchill’s lifetime. Cuvée 'Sir Winston Churchill’ is only made in the very best vintages and always released later than the other vintage dated Pol Roger Champagnes.
The 2006 vintage is the 16th release, produced in very small quantities and after 10 years of ageing. The must undergoes two ‘débourbages’ (settlings), one immediately after pressing and the second, a ‘débourbage à froid’, in stainless steel tanks at 6°C, over a 24-hour period. A slow cool fermentation took place in stainless steel with each varietal and village parcel kept separate. The wine underwent a full malolactic-fermentation prior to blending. Then the all-important secondary fermentation takes place in bottle at 9°C in the deepest Pol Roger cellars (33 metres below street level) where the wine is kept until it undergoes remuage (riddling) by hand, which is today a rarity in Champagne. The very fine and persistent mousse for which Pol Roger is renowned owes much to their deep, cool cellars.
Pinot Noir predominates, providing structure, breadth and robustness whilst Chardonnay contributes elegance, finesse and subtlety. This 2006 has all the understated poise that one has come to expect of this classic cuvée. A cascade of impeccably refined acidity showcasing a seam of minerality that flows deep all the way to a lengthy finish. On the palate, the wine has effortless grace and lifted vigour initially masked by a controlled first impression.
• As it fills your glass the wine displays a vibrant pale gold colour enhanced by an uninterrupted thread of tiny bubbles heralding a lively enthusiasm to charm your senses. The refined aromas showcases accents of pip and stone-fruits, toasted nuts, and a note of fresh brioche. On the broad and engaging palate, the flavours unfold with a rich tapestry and roasted apples, mandarins, a lift of citrus and numerous threads of almonds, hazelnuts, nougat and pistachio and allspice mingle with refined freshness from natural balanced acidity, beguiling agility with a silky texture and an enduring length.
This Pol Roger Cuvée ‘Sir Winston Churchill’ Brut Vintage 2006 has 12.5% Alc./vol. - and a dosage of 8-9g/L. Chill gently and serve in an aromatic wine glass at 9°- 11°C.
CELLARING POTENTIAL: *(Review 21/10/2019)
Complex and ready to be enjoyed this season; and over the next 7 - 8 years.
FOOD PAIRING SUGGESTIONS:
Perfect wine pairing with stuffed crab, slow roasted chicken or turkey, tender lamb cutlets, pork with crackling and apple sauce, plus aged truffle-brie on thick toast - enjoy.