Roederer Estate Brut
Roederer's winemaking style is based on two elements: ownership of its own vineyards and the addition of oak-aged reserve wines to each year's blend or cuvee. All the grapes for the Anderson Valley wines are grown on the Estate.
Each year, the winemaker... View More
A voluptuous and expressive sparkler, with floral red apple, brioche and cinnamon spice aromas and rich, vibrant flavors that finish on a luxurious note.
The fruit flavors are apparent, fresh and lively in this medium-bodied, beautifully balanced brut. Light pear and pineapple aromas are followed by richer pear and citrus flavors, and subtle hints of baking spices, almonds and a nice earthy touch emerge.
The Roederer Estate Brut has always garnered a special place amongst the folks in the wine trade. This is my go-to bubbly from anywhere in the New World and often in place of higher price bubblies from France and Italy. Yes, this one is as solid as they come. Medium straw color, refined beads; excellent aroma of ripe apples and light creaminess, maybe even a hint of hazelnut; medium bodied, delicately layered on the palate, excellent structure; dry, fine acidity, well balanced; complex flavors of ripe apples and cream; medium to long finish, fine nuances in the aftertaste. (Tasted: August 11, 2015, San Francisco, CA)
Year and year out, the Roederer Estate Brut ranks high on the list of preferred non-vintage Brut bottlings and, in this outing, impresses more than usual. It is vibrant and fresh and unstinting in autolyzed richness all at once, and it is as impeccably balanced as it is deep and continuous in flavor. Its wonderfully refined, terrifically sustained mousse heightens its sensations of brightness and youthful vigor, and it shows the complexity and crafting of a wine that we would guess costs far more than it does.
I would happily drink this wine every day if there weren’t so many other wines in the world to taste. Its wonderful play of creamy yet kinetic textures, the custardy, limey flavours, and its impeccable focus all add up to one of the best ways possible to greet 6pm after a long work day. Roederer Estate was, in my opinion, the first California sparkling producer to achieve complexity in its wines – especially in the estate’s prestige cuvée, L’Ermitage. The Brut (sold as Quartet in the UK) is generally 60% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir.
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A regal variety of incredible purity and precision...
A regal variety of incredible purity and precision, Riesling possesses a remarkable ability to reflect the character of wherever it is grown while still maintaining easily identifiable typicity. This versatile grape can be just as enjoyable dry or sweet, young or old, still or sparkling, and can age longer than nearly any other white variety. Riesling is best known in Germany and Alsace, and is also of great importance in Austria. The variety has also been particularly successful in Australia’s Clare and Eden Valleys, New Zealand, Oregon, Washington, cooler regions of California, and the Finger Lakes in New York.
In the Glass
Riesling is low in alcohol, with high acidity, steely minerality, and stone fruit, spice, citrus, and floral notes. At its ripest it leans towards juicy peach and nectarine, and pineapple, while in cooler climes it is more redolent of meyer lemon, lime, and green apple. With age, Riesling can become truly revelatory, developing unique, complex aromatics, often with a hint of gasoline.
Riesling is very versatile, enjoying the company of sweet-fleshed fish like sole, most Asian food, especially Thai and Vietnamese (bottlings with some residual sugar and low alcohol are the perfect companions for dishes with substantial spice), and freshly shucked oysters. Sweeter styles work well with fruit-based desserts.
It can be difficult to discern the level of sweetness in a Riesling, and German labeling laws do not make things any easier. Look for the world “trocken” to indicate a dry wine, or “halbtrocken” or “feinherb” for off-dry. Some producers will include a helpful sweetness scale on the back label—happily, a growing trend.