Founded in 1776, and property of the same family since 1819, Champagne Louis Roederer is today one of the last major champagne houses to be an independent family affair. The annual production of its wines (Brut Premier, Carte Blanche, Brut Vintage, Rosé Vintage, Blanc de Blancs, Cristal, Cristal Rosé) represents just over three million bottles, distributed to 100 countries worldwide.
A great Rosé champagne must be made from very ripe grapes – sometimes difficult to obtain in the Champagne climate. As a result, Louis Roederer has chosen to invest in one of the earliest Champagne crus, Cumières, for which the steeply-sloping, shallow clay and limestone soils face south and benefit from additional light reflected from the river Marne, enabling great phenolic maturity to be achieved. In these select terroirs, Louis Roederer applies the precision wine-making methods required to craft a saignée rosé.
Seven percent of the wine is vinified in oak tuns, without malolactic fermentation. To produce its rosé champagnes, Louis Roederer uses the saignée (skin contact) process after cold pellicular maceration that lasts from five to eight days in the liquid phase. The Rosé 2009 cuvée is aged for four years on lees and is left for an additional and minimum period of six months after disgorging to attain optimal maturity.
The winter in the Champagne region was a classic cold and dry one, which favoured highly homogeneous bud-break at particularly late dates: on 10th April for the Chardonnay and the Pinot Noir, and on 16th April for the Meunier. The spring brought rainy and warm conditions, although rainfall was irregular, which resulted in a very heterogeneous development of the vines at the crucial flowering phase. From the end of July until the end of the harvest, the Champagne region again experienced very continental, exceptionally hot and dry conditions. The warm sunlight in August prompted maturity in optimal conditions, with virtually inexistent rainfall throughout the months of August and September. The harvests began on 10th September for the Pinots Noirs in the Vallée de la Marne and the Chardonnays of the Côte des Blancs, and on 15th September for the Pinots Noirs from the Montagne de Reims.
A salmon pink colour with golden tints, produces a persistent stream of delicate bubbles. It has an intense fruitiness with a blend of red fruits (Morello cherry), blood oranges, and peach, with slightly candied notes. Nuances of pastries emerge with some delicate autolysis. The attack is round and fruity, marked by grapefruit and citrus zest. Its full body and density are sustained by the almost limestone freshness: the freshness and texture blend to give the wine its persistence. The effervescence integrates well into the juicy and concentrated envelope produced by the exceptionally mature flesh of the Pinot Noir fruits. Fine notes of lightly roasted cocoa beans add generosity and create a sensation of harmony.
It magnificently complements fish such as salmon; meat such as lamb, veal, guinea fowl, and even pheasant; and soft cheeses, such as Chaource and Brillat-Savarin. It can also be served with red fruit based deserts that are less sweet, such as a red fruit zabaglione or a red fruit gratin.
Serve at 12°C
Wine Spectator – 94 points
“Tangy raspberry and black cherry fruit is underscored by smoke and mineral accents in this finely knit, racy champagne. Mouthwatering, with hints of apple blossom, lemon zest and creamed almond on the finish. Drink now through 2029.”
Alison Napjus, Wine Spectator
62% Pinot Noir