Monday, June 18, 2018

Gosset Champagne- What Wine Should Be

I recently had the opportunity to sit across the table from, and share a meal with Bertrand Verduzier, the International Business Director for Gosset Champagne.  The food was incredible, but the Champagnes they served were exquisite.  What truly got me that evening was the way Verduzier spoke about wine.

I've had incredible opportunities to speak with wine professionals- makers, somms, vineyard owners.  I've had the chance to learn about what inspires them, to hear how they've perfected their craft, to understand their joys and challenges.  Never before however has one embodied so closely everything I know and feel about wine.  

If you've ever sat down over glass of wine with me- either at a restaurant, or in a friends home, or on one of my City Wine Tours, you've heard me, sometimes ridiculously, talk about the story that wine tells.  It is truly the case however- just like any party guest- that your wine should regale you with tidbits from its life thus far.  It should wax on about the early days when the fruit was simply a dream to the bud, to when the yeast met the juice, to when you finally pull the cork. Every stage of its life influences its taste and attributes.  

Every wine you meet should tell you its life story.

Verduzier, speaking for Gosset Champagne, is of the same mindset.  Champagne, generally, is a funny wine- its often a blend of different vineyards for each house, and for that matter its a blend of years.  Where still wines showcase the year in which the grapes were grown, sparkling typically blends together several different years to provide a consistent product. Consistent- but lacking in story.  Consistent wines, showing the same flavors year after year, are lacking in personality.  Gosset knows this.  They limit the blending of years so that the majority of their wine is all from a single year.  That means that it weathered the same storms, sought shelter from hot days together, and ripened into perfect worthy fruit together.  

When you pop open a bottle of Gosset, you've popped open one of your most interesting party guests.  The tales of growing in same vineyards as their forefathers when Gosset began in 1584.  They speak to the time honored traditions passed down as the house transferred from making all still wines to adding bubbles.  Their fruit forward presence testifies to their growers commitment to not use malolactic fermentation.   Their flavors aren't manipulated but instead showcase the great and tough weather of its year along with the talent of their winemaker.    

Gosset Champagne is a true testament to what Champagne, and really all wines should be.  The fruit is the star and whatever it has to say- we're listening! 

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