This has been mentioned in several recent threads. When it comes to champagne, decanting seems at odds with the whole idea of cork-popping, effervescent goodness.
How do you know when a champagne should a champagne be decanted? Is it based on vintage? Or producer? Or something more esoteric and mysterious?
News to me. I have no idea why someone would decant Champagne, unless the bottle is basically devoid of bubbles and there's a lot of sediment at the bottom.
"Wine only turns into alcohol if you let it sit."
-Lindsay Bluth Fünke
I've heard of this with very full bodied Champagnes. I had a really mind opening experience with a glass of 1988 Krug some years back. At the request of a friend, I put a few ounces in a Burgundy stem and left it until after dinner. After the wine warmed and lost most of it's effervescence, it was like drinking a great White Burgundy. Not the way I enjoy my Champagnes typically, but a real eye-opener. Even with a younger full bodied bubbly (a Phillipponat Clos des Goisses for example) the act of decanting serves the same purpose as decanting a young red.
PHThis message has been edited. Last edited by: PurpleHaze,
I wouldn't do it. We had a 2002 Pierre Peters Les Chetillons a while back that was clearly not ready to drink. I left it in the glass for an hour and it was then flat and not ready to drink. The wine needs to be aged.
Just one more sip.
I agree with Board-O that nothing benefits a fine Champagne like age itself. Decanting will never, ever, mimik the benefits. This is pronounced more with Champagne than most any other type of wine, IMO.
That said, I've experienced several truly fine Champagnes that continuously evolved in the glass over several hours (2-3hrs). I recall w+a posting in the past that Philipponnat had their Champagnes out in the tasting room for several hours for tasting, purposely, as they showed better with the exposure (If I'm inaccurate about this, w+a, please correct me).
The point is, IMO, that there are more than one types of Champagne styles. Not all of them shine in the 'effervesent, active beading' period, but indeed shine with only minute amounts of beading activity is evident. They don't all go flat. Personally, I really enjoy experiencing a fine Champagne throughout its' transition period in-glass. It's a fantastic journey.
As PH posts, older and less 'lively' Champy is not to everyone's taste. But it is certainly something that everyone should take the opportunity to invetigate if it is.
At our visit to Philipponnat, all the wines we tasted had been previously opened except the Clos des Goisses, but they had temporary closures on them to prevent the loss of bubbles. They were all almost completely full, so I'm not sure there was much exposure to air.This message has been edited. Last edited by: Board-O,
Just one more sip.
If the Champagne is made with Chardonnay grapes, the fact that it winds up tasting like a White Burgundy isn't all that shocking.
99% of lawyers give the rest of us a bad name.
The wine does contain a significant percentage of Chardonnay, but also Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. It's vinified differently and intended to be consumed differently. It tasted like a GREAT older white Burg. Shocking? Not sure. Surprising? Absolutely.
I just found this thread. I rarely check this section of the forum.
I have had a number of bottles decanted before, both here in the USA and in Champagne.
The first time was with Thierry Garnier while tasting wines at Philipponnat. Each of the young wines were decanted. ( Clos des Goisses) Cedric Bouchard also decanted a wine before we tasted it.
The decant question was once on the Philipponnat website, but not sure if still there. They even recommended a decant for young wines.
I have had both Krug and Dom decant young wine at there annual Christmas dinner here in Texas.
A young wine will not go flat, and effervescence will still be there, trust me.
I often prefer young Champagne in a white Burgundy glass. Gkpoor and I just enjoyed a very young '96 Champagne this week, and we both drank out of still wine glasses.
At a Piper Heidsieck dinner, there was some cross promoting of Riedel's Champagne decanter. Didn't notice a difference in those wines...
Originally posted by Board-O:
It's truly amazing the amount of meaningless posts you make.
"All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved." Matthew 10:22
I searched the Philipponnat site and do not find their discussion of this topic.
However, I did come across an interesting blog on this subject (in line with Berno's post) (clicky)
KSC02, Philipponnat still refers to decanting.
Click on the storing and service link under the Le Clos des Goisses link.
Got it. Thank you.
Recommended decant time of 10 minutes?
Just as well to 'open in glass', no?
BTW, I really like their '360' link in the cellar.
Almost gives one goosebumps (sound must be on for full effect).
I think they mean 10 minutes before trying first sip. It does continue to decant you know, unless you drink very VERY fast.
Decanting Champagne? Serve and wait a few minutes before drinking.
The temperature the champagne is served at is more critical.
ABSOLUTELY SOUTHERN FRANCE
I think we may have a new 'empty suit' blown into town...
Up until that post KSC this was very informative...I have NEVER decanted Champagne...not because I dont think it should be decanted... but because I didnt even know it was a option. I have used larger mouthed glasses before to see if it would open up a bit...these do work fairly well IMO.
Say NO to Shiraz!
True, marcb. I find the shape of the glass has a HUGE influence on many, many Champagnes. I personally never consider decanting Champagne as much as I ensure that I keep enough to last for a long while (couple of hours). Great Champagne transitions continuously over that time. Older bottles may not last that long, true, but the entire time is an adventure.
Gage consumption to transformation.
I have not seen the empty suit reference recently on this forum.
Well, until VELISSA blew into town the phrase hasn't been so 'fitting'
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