Unusual and Rare Kinds of Champagne to Try in 2022
25th July 2022
Celebrity soirees these days are just as likely to be stocked with https://homegrowncannabisco.com/products/strawberry-cheese-autoflower-marijuana-seeds weed as rare Champagne. Despite changing times, bubbly remains a perennial favourite for celebrations of all kinds.
If you’re planning something special and want to mark the occasion with a memorable beverage, stay right there. In the following sections, we look at some of the most exclusive bottles of bubbly and what makes them so sought after.
If you’re still fixating on the Strawberry Cheese, keep reading. Something interesting below should grab your attention if cannabis is your thing.
Champagne Kinds, What’s The Difference?
Authentic Champagne is made under strict rules regulating every aspect of its production, called the méthode champenoise. Sparkling wine made elsewhere follows similar procedures, but without coming from the region, it can’t truly be called “champagne.
This centuries-old recipe even dictates which grape varieties may be used. The three primary varieties are Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier, and Pinot Noir. How these are combined determines the style of Champagne, of which there are three.
- Blanc de Blancs: This kind of Champagne is made with 100% Chardonnay grapes. This blanc-style bubbly has a fresh lemon and apple flavour.
- Blanc de Noirs: Made with Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, or a mix of both. A gentle pressing process means the wine is white despite coming from all black grapes. Typically features raspberry and strawberry notes.
- Rosé: One of the most popular Champagne kinds recently, Rosé is Champagne mixed with a small amount of red wine, usually Pinot Meunier or Pinot Noir.
Beyond style, there’s also the issue of vintage and non-vintage to contend with. Non-vintage Champagnes are made using grapes from multiple years, whereas vintage is made with grapes from a single harvest.
Generally speaking, vintage Champagne tends to be more expensive as it needs more time to mature and takes more labour to produce. An excellent non-vintage bottle of bubbly is still a treat for regular use.
The Rarest of Pleasures
Outside of the three main grape varieties are Arbane, Fromenteau, Pinot Blanc, and Petit Meslier. These are much less common and less productive, making their Champagne rare and expensive.
In 1935, the Champagne Appellation Controlée was formalised. Among its many conditions was a ban on planting other grape varieties than the three approved ones. Existing vineyards were permitted to continue making Champagne but forbidden to plant new vines.
These vineyards have dwindled over the years, but some remain, producing highly sought-after bubbly. Here’s a selection of just a few.
- BAM!: This non-vintage is made from 27% Pinot Blanc and Arbane, and 46% Petit Meslier, giving it its snappy name. The Tarlant family produces this rare cuvée in the Marne Valley, where they’ve been making bubbly since 1687.
- L’Originale: Champagne Pierre Gerbais from Aube produces this champagne using 100% Pinot Blanc grapes. The vines responsible for this tipple cover just 0.5 ha and were planted in 1904, making them almost 120 years old.
- Quattuor: Blanc de Quatre Blancs comes from Champagne Drappier, and contains an equal split of Arbane, Petit Meslier, Pinot Blanc, and Chardonnay. It’s also known as Quattuour, Latin for four.
- Precious Parcel Petit Meslier: A vintage from the Côte des Blancs by Champagne Duval-Leroy. Petit Meslier grapes are vulnerable to frost and disease, making their cultivation difficult and yield low. As a result, this Champagne is made in startlingly limited quantities–the 2005 vintage produced only 988 bottles.
And Now For Something Completely Different
If you want a glass of more unusual Champagne, adjust your criteria. The strict rules governing “real” Champagne don’t allow for much experimentation. Forego the regional requirements, however, and there’s a world of weird, wonderful sparkling wines out there.
If you’d like some suggestions, here are five curiosities that serve as an excellent alternative to traditional Champagnes.
- Vej Bianco Antico Metodo Classico: This sparkling orange wine comes from the rolling hills of Parma in Italy. It’s made from 100% Malvasia di Candia Aromatica oranges by a family-run winery. A heady perfume and dry flavour complement this beverage’s fruitiness. The perfect poolside drink.
- La Cidrerie du Vulcain de Fer: This sparkling apple wine or cider comes from the venerable Alpine orchards of Fribourg in Switzerland. Less aggressive than British or French ciders, this has a pleasant floral aroma and a dry, fresh tang of apples.
- House of Saka’s Sparkling Pink: If you’re in one of the weed-friendly countries, cannabis-infused concoctions are an exciting and memorable way to celebrate. This light pink bubbly is made from Californian grapes, is alcohol-free, and loaded with THC and CBD.
- Rozoy-Picot: A unique line of French sparkling wines from the family winery of Clement Rozoy. This line of “terpene champagnes” seeks to create a sophisticated beverage with all the natural flavours of cannabis.
Rozoy-Picot currently offers two different kinds of champagne based on OG Kush and Amnesia. We should point out that this sparkling wine doesn’t contain THC but is alcoholic.
- Mioya Shuzo “Yuho no Shiro”: This sparkling sake comes from Japan and makes for a unique bottle of bubbly. Its unfiltered, unpasteurized nature makes for a cloudy appearance. Lightly sparkling, it delivers an exciting blend of sweet and savoury flavours with just a hint of saltiness.
Despite being around for centuries, rare champagne remains an iconic beverage synonymous with celebrating. Preserving the méthode champenoise naturally limits innovation within traditional circles, but interesting things are happening elsewhere.
The sparkling wines outlined above are just a few examples of the creativity taking place around the world. Share this article with your friends and see if they know about any other strange or unique bubbly.
Kyle Kushman is an American writer, educator, activist and award-winning cannabis cultivator and breeder specializing in veganic cultivation. He is a representative of Homegrown Cannabis CO company, has been a contributor for over 20 years, and has taught courses in advanced horticulture at Oaksterdam University in Oakland, California and across the United States. Kushman also hosts a cannabis podcast called ‘The Grow Show with Kyle Kushman’.
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