Louis Roederer Cristal
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Louis Roederer Cristal 1996
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Louis Roederer Cristal 1996 Champagne

More vintages: 2000, 2002, 2006, 2007, 2009Louis Roederer, the largest independent, family-managed champagne maker is the fortunate proprietor to 235 hectares of sublimely located vineyards. In 1876, Russia's Tsar Alexander II - a lover of Louis Roederer wines - asked the producer to create a special cuvée for his personal use which was unique, in both its style and bottle design. So Louis Roederer offered him an exceptional crystal bottle, containing the fruit of vines selected from the seven great crus on his estate. This cuvée would be offered in only the truly 'great' years in which the ripeness of the Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes could provide the subtle, precise balance that have now become the distinction of the leading prestige cuvée of Champagne.

The 1996 vintage was one of those standout years; one of, if not the, best of the last twenty. A warm beginning to June followed by a cooler end, provided favourable growing conditions: the weather fluctuation resulted in staggered flowering of the Chardonnay grapes. September was sunny but mild with light scattered showers creating incredible grape maturation with high sugar and acidity levels. This unique sugar/acidity balance combined with small, concentrated berries revealed an aromatic depth rarely seen in Champagne.

The colour of Cristal 1996 is a matured yellow and it boasts flowing, delicate bubbles. The nose is rich with ripe fruit aromas of peaches and apricot. In the mouth, you can really taste the concentrated Chardonnay and it has a fresh, lingering finish. This is a remarkably well-balanced Champagne and it is aging wonderfully, still very youthful and surely one of Roederer's best ever.

Grape Varieties: 55% Pinot Noir, 45% Chardonnay
Dosage: 11 g/L
Disgorged (bottle): 2002
Disgorged (magnum): 2003

Louis Roederer Cristal 1996 Champagne: same day delivery in London, next day UK mainland & free delivery on 6+ bottles.
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Louis Roederer Cristal
Oct 2015
“Tasted blind. Disgorged 2003. From the secondary market; stored in Octavian since purchase from UK importer.
Toasty nose with a strong refreshing green streak. Very tight and tense, really dancing and sensational. Long and utterly gorgeous and flirtatious. Finishes dry but only after dancing a dance on the palate. Tight and exciting. I thought it was the magnum (though had some difficulty registering this on my iPhone) and it was.”
Oct 2014
“The 1996 Cristal is another highlight in a tasting full of thrilling wines. Cristal is all about finesse, nuance and understatement, all of which come through in spades here. Hints of apricot jam and wild flowers are laced into the soft, super-expressive finish.”
Nov 2010
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“Even though Cristal is typically very appealing upon release, the truth is that it needs serious cellaring to reveal its pedigree. Several recent bottles have been breathtaking. The aromatics, fruit and acidity are all beautifully woven together in this fabulous Cristal.”
Aug 2007
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“Magnum. 61% PN, 39% Chardonnay. 3% oak fermentation.
A green hint. Tangy and very vibrant and nervy and vivacious. Very tight and firm and tightly laced like a corset. More depth and extract than in the ‘99 – very nerveux. About as much astringence as the 1999, still. Very firm. Very fine and tight and angular. This should make spectacular old bones – if it’s allowed to.”
Wine Enthusiast,
Nov 2003
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“A paradox. This has weight yet a sensation of weightlessness thanks to its seamless texture and harmony. Still firm and forceful yet elegant, offering citrus, pastry, biscuit and hazelnut notes enmeshed in the creamy texture. Great structure for aging.”
Nov 2002
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“Multidimensional nose offers baked apple, orange oil, acacia honey, white chocolate, toffee and earthy low tones. Expansive, superconcentrated and powerful but not aggressive, with wonderfully sweet flavors of orange, flowers and honey supported by strong underlying structure. An amazingly solid Champagne with the stuffing for extended development in bottle.”
Bought from Bordeaux Index in April 2015 and they purchased it from Louis Roederer's UK agent MMD, this is currently held in bond at Vinotheque in Burton-On-Trent, where it is cellared in ideal conditions and for same day deliveries small quantities are held in our London offices in a top of the range Eurocave

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