‘Come quickly, I am tasting stars’ is the famed expression of a 17th Century monk after his first taste of Champagne. The monk was Dom Perignon, the cellar master of the Benedictine Abbey, Hautvilliers. Diverging from common legend, he pioneered winemaking techniques such as blending grapes, the introduction of cork and enhanced the use of natural sugar. He did not invent the Champagne method, the advent of which occurred naturally due to the cool winters and warm spring months in Champagne.
In 1937 Moet et Chandon purchased the eponymously named Dom Perignon from Eugene Mercier. This has become their prestige vintage Champagne, meaning it is not made in poor vintages and is matured for three years, opposed to non-vintage champagne which has the minimum requirement of one and a half years. Dom Perignon has true global recognition, the 1981 vintage was served at Lady Diana and Prince Charles’ wedding, as well as the 2,500 year celebration of the Persian Empire.
Dom Perignon’s assemblage is based on 50% Pinot Noir and 50% Chardonnay and offers wonderful vibrancy and complexity as soon as it is released, incredible nuance and delicacy after 15-20 years and elegance and incredible layers after 30.
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