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Taittinger Collection Zao Wou-Ki | Vintage: 1998 | Released: 2003
Taittinger Collection Zao Wou-Ki | Vintage: 1998 | Released: 2003 Taittinger Collection Zao Wou-Ki | Vintage: 1998 | Released: 2003

Taittinger Collection Zao Wou-Ki | Vintage: 1998 | Released: 2003

Per Bottle
£376.00
Taittinger Collection Zao Wou-Ki | Vintage: 1998 | Released: 2003 >
Taittinger Collection Zao Wou-Ki | Vintage: 1998 | Released: 2003 <
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Taittinger Collection Zao Wou-Ki | Vintage: 1998 | Released: 2003 Overview

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In the early 1950s, whilst on his first trip to the United States to promote Taittinger champagne, Claude Taittinger met Rudy Kopf, who would later become their partner for the distribution of Taittinger champagne on the other side of the Atlantic. After getting to know each other better, Kopf asked Claude the following question: “In tomorrow’s world, there will only be space for big corporations and artists. Which side will you choose for Taittinger champagne?”. Instinctively, Claude Taittinger replied: “The artists!”; thus, setting out the direction in which he would take Champagne Taittinger when he took over as President 10 years later.

Having forged strong links with several artists, Claude Taittinger created the Taittinger Collection in 1983. He received support from some of the greatest names in contemporary art to showcase the best vintage Grands Crus produced by the Champagne House. The bottle becomes both the canvas and the inspiration for a creation, signed by a distinguished artist. The Hungarian artist Victor Vasarely was the first artist to produce work for this unique art gallery, which to date includes a long line of designs by artists such as André Masson, Roy Lichtenstein, Imaï, Rauschenberg and Amadou Sow.

Artist: Zao Wou-Ki was born in Beijing and came from a family which descended from the very ancient Song dynasty. After having studied at the prestigious Academy of Fine Arts in Hangzhou, he came to France in 1948. Here, he discovered the great Western painters and began creating an impressive synthesis of traditional Chinese art and European art - a melange of his Orient heritage and the West. During the 1950s, he became friends with Picasso, Miro, Giacometti, Vieira da Silva, Hartung and Soulages. He died in Switzerland in 2013. Zao Wou-Ki, who became a French national in 1964, is perhaps the most moving of the great abstract painters of the 20th century.

Art: For his collaboration with Taittinger Champagne, Zao Wou-Ki takes us into a world which characterises his style of abstraction. ‘I paint what isn’t seen’ he said. ‘My paintings become unreadable. Still life and flowers no longer exist. I am attracted by marks which are imaginary, indecipherable’. Indecipherable maybe, but not unfathomable to those who allow themselves to be led into his mysterious abysses, sea beds, phantasmagorical grottos and skies, which are both calm and stormy, where the viewer is drawn into a feeling of complete physical freedom and weightlessness.

Vintage: The bottle contains a Brut Millésimé 1998, made from Chardonnay (50 %) and Pinot Noir (50 %), taken from the best vintages.

Weather: The harvest in 1998 started in mid-September in the rain. After alternating hot and cold periods, the sun promptly made an appearance and rescued an abundant crop which had wonderfully ripened. The balance between the sugar alcohol and the acid is unprecedented and ranks it among the best harvests in the House’s history. The 1998 wines are blessed with an impressive intensity and harmonious aromas. These qualities, together with an ever-present freshness mean that this vintage keeps very well.

Due to the limited nature of these bottles, they are becoming increasingly difficult to source - particularly the original vintages from the 1980s. Full collections are especially rare. At this age we dont expect these champagnes to be drunk, more of a collector item for the bottle artwork.

Read more about the full collection here
Champagne Taittinger History
+
News Articles
  1. The Taittinger Collection: 1983-2016

    The Taittinger Collection: 1983-2016

    December 1, 2021

    We are selling an extremely rare complete set of The Taittinger Collection: The Art of Champagne - 13 champagnes in total, from vintage 1978 to vintage 2008.
  2. 2018 Vins Clairs: A Vintage Summary

    2018 Vins Clairs: A Vintage Summary

    June 14, 2019

    Earlier this year, we tasted a range of 2018 vins clairs with winemakers at fifteen different houses in Champagne. Thanks to exceptional weather throughout the year, some have been calling it 'the vintage of the century' and expectations are already sky-high. But just how much potential does 2018 have?
  3. Taittinger: 2018 Vins Clairs Tasting

    Taittinger: 2018 Vins Clairs Tasting

    April 7, 2019

    The unusual weather patterns in 2018 produced the "perfect conditions for the vineyard", according to new Taittinger Chef de Cave Alexandre Ponnavoy. We met last month to taste the vins clairs, which displayed incredible specificity: each wine showcasing the distinctive characteristics of its individual origins.
  4. The Future According to Taittinger

    The Future According to Taittinger

    October 20, 2017

    Our trip to Reims in August included a smorgasbord of Taittinger: over twenty champagne tasted with head winemaker Loïc Dupont, including an interesting look into the future with Comtes de Champagne 2008 and 2012.
  5. Taittinger: One Big Champagne Family

    Taittinger: One Big Champagne Family

    March 30, 2017

    We tasted the 2016 base wines with Vitalie Taittinger, Loïc Dupont & Damien Le Sueur. Discussing the influence of oak barrels, the new 'image of Taittinger Rosé', the potential for Comtes 2016 and Taittinger's new winery; this was a truly eye-opening visit.
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