First launched in 1972 for Veuve Clicquot’s bicentennial, the rare and remarkable La Grande Dame champagne is a tribute to Madame Clicquot. The 2008 is an audacious wine with a strong presence up front that reveals dried fig and apricot combined with light toasty notes of praline and hazelnut. There is a soft silky texture to the palate despite the almost impudent opening.
The world-renowned Champagne house Veuve Clicquot was founded in 1772 by the son of a well-to-do French banking family. Ironically though, it was not Philippe, nor his son François whom would make theirs a household name, but François' widow [Veuve] Barbe Nicole Clicquot Ponsardin. At the tender young age of 27 (in 1805) she became one of the first business women in modern times. She would prove to be a great asset to the world of winemaking; marketing and selling wines as far as Russia, inventing the first riddling table to make her wines crystal clear and setting the tone of innovation at the house of Clicquot that prevails today. Honoring their motto, "Only one quality, the finest" they've employed a short lineage of merely 10 Cellar Masters through the ages in their quest to maintain the utmost quality and a style that is uniquely Clicquot.
Now almost blanc de noirs, boasting 92% Pinot Noir and just 8% Chardonnay from 60%-70% estate vineyards. La Grande Dame is one of the most affordable of Champagne’s elite prestige set, and the stunning 2008 vintage was intricately engineered by the masterful Dominique Demarville for the long haul. It unites all of the enduring potential of its thundering grands crus with the tension and energy of this legendary season, colliding high-tensile acidity with deep, fine, powdery chalk minerality, bringing its finish into stark focus.
An elegant Champagne, powered by a sculpted frame of acidity and minerality, this wears the refined, lacy mousse and well-meshed flavors of black currant, lemon curd, toast and marzipan like finely tailored clothing. Fresh and lasting, with hints of spice and smoke on the finish.