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Pol Roger Sir Winston Churchill 1998 Champagne 1.5L
|Pol Roger Sir Winston Churchill 1998 - Magnum - 1.5L||Magnum - 1.5L||£625.00|
|Size||bt per case||In Bond|
|Pol Roger Sir Winston Churchill 1998
Price per Case
Weather: The 1998 vintage shows all the hallmarks of a truly outstanding year. The features of the vintage were a high natural sugar content in the grapes and an excellent level of acidity, indicating an exceptional overall balance and long ageing potential.
News Article: Pol Roger Sir Winston Churchill 1998 placed first in our Sir Winston Churchill Vertical Tasting in June 2016 with James Simpson MW. Read the full write-up here.
Vineyards: 100% Grand Cru
Grape Varieties: Family Secret | Likely 70-80% Pinot Noir, 20-30% Chardonnay
Ageing: 10 years on the lees
Disgorged: July 2008
Dosage: 8 g/l
Drink: Now to 2030
Tasting Note: A rich golden colour, this 1998 has a delicate mousse of tiny bubbles accompanied by scents of hawthorn and hazelnut. In the mouth, it displays a fine balance between fresh acidity and full-bodied wine. Truly a champagne of incredible depth and flavours that linger long on the palate: now at 17 years old, Sir Winston Churchill 1998 is still incredibly young and the magnums even more so.
Deep greenish gold. Putty, complete nose. Just the right side of over-mature. Solid and just fresh enough – a sort of elephant on a tightrope. Powerful finish. Magnum? Yes. ”
Very deep straw gold. The biggest difference in colour. Much less fizzy than the other sample (which turned out to be the magnum). Almost oxidised nose. Losing it. Not fresh enough for me, although it scored quite highly with the crowd. I thought it had to be the bottle and it was. ”
Remarkably, a small team of less than ten complete everything in the cellar by hand and Pol Roger boast four of the region's remaining fifteen riddlers, who impressively turn over 60,000 bottles a day. The House use no oak in the winemaking process and their double cold-settling of the grape juice contributes to the pure-fruity style of their champagnes. Indeed, it is this style and their respect for tradition that initiated Sir Winston Churchill's lifelong attachment to Pol Roger, who famously insisted: "In defeat I need it, in victory I deserve it." Today, their prestige cuvée is named in honour of the great man.
Cellar Master: Damien Cambres
Winery Location: Épernay | Champagne, France
Champagne Region: Côte des Blancs
Annual Production (bottles): 1,600,000
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The first sale of champagne was in January 1849 when family circumstances forced Pol Roger to set up a business; his father had contracted an incurable disease and could no longer carry on his practice. The customer was a merchant in Aÿ, the native village of Pol Roger. The firm developed rapidly, moving to Épernay from Aÿ in 1851.
In 1899 the founder died, by which point the brand had acquired enviable recognition for just a short fifty years of trading. However, disaster struck in February 1900 when part of the cellars and winery building collapsed, destroying over 500 casks and one and a half million bottles. Maurice and George, who had taken over from their father, had to work tirelessly to get the company back on track.
Maison Pol Roger now owns 91 hectares of vineyards on prime sites in the Vallée de la Marne, the Montagne de Reims and the Côte des Blancs and is 55% self-sufficient in its grape requirements. The cellars run for 7km underground and are on three levels, the deepest known as the ‘cave de prise de mousse’ at 34m below street level. As the name suggests, this is where the wine undergoes its secondary fermentation in bottle. The fact that this deep cellar is at a natural temperature of 9°C or less, rather than a normal cellar temperature of 11-12°C, prolongs this fermentation and contributes to the quality and particular style of the champagnes and their famously fine bubbles.
The Pol Roger range starts with a non-vintage Brut Réserve and the rest of the champagnes are vintage-dated: Brut Vintage, Brut Rosé and Blanc de Blancs, as well as their prestige cuvée Sir Winston Churchill.
Great Britain is, and always has been, the premier export market for Champagne Pol Roger, a tradition dating back to the 1860s. Even as early as 1855, Pol Roger was making Brut Champagne as he knew that Britain favoured this style of sparkling wine.
Sir Winston Churchill’s predilection for Pol Roger was sealed in the immediate aftermath of World War Two, when he met and formed a lasting friendship with the captivating Odette Pol-Roger, who encapsulated Churchill’s romantic vision of France. For the remainder of his lifetime, Pol Roger was to remain Sir Winston’s champagne of choice, supplied to wherever his engagements demanded from what he described as “the world’s most drinkable address”: 44 Avenue de Champagne, Épernay. The friendship between the Churchill and Pol Roger families endures to this day.
Created in tribute to Pol Roger’s most illustrious devotee, the prestige cuvée Sir Winston Churchill is appropriately composed of only the best grapes, from only the best vineyard sites to which Pol Roger have access and from only the best vintage years declared by the House. As Sir Winston himself once declared: “My tastes are simple. I am easily satisfied with the best!” The precise formula is a family secret, but invariably is true to the style that Sir Winston himself preferred: robust, full-flavoured and mature. We suspect Pinor Noir dominates most releases, with 20-30% Chardonnay completing the blend.