“If you are not actively buying and cellaring Champagne at the present time, you are missing out on a “golden age” for the region akin to what California was going through in the decade of the 1970s with cabernet sauvignon or Bordeaux went through in the decade of the 1980s and you are very, very likely to regret your oversight in the years to come.
Champagne is one of the consistently most age-worthy wines produced anywhere in the world and it deserves to be treated properly in this regard, with bottles purchased and laid down for five to ten years of bottle age, allowing the secondary and tertiary layers of complexity to fully emerge, the sometimes taut structural elements to relax and blossom and the wines to fully come into their own.
As the focus of the Champagne landscape has shifted from brand to domaine, vineyard and vigneron, the wines from this region have never been better, and this is true from the grandest of the Grandes Marques to the smallest, passionate vigneron, and we as consumers and collectors of these beautiful wines, need to adapt our perspectives to the exciting and dramatically changing realities of Champagne.
Gaining a greater appreciation of how these wines will evolve and
blossom in our cellars is a very good place to begin this understanding.
A Great Time to Build a Cellar
As I have written about pretty extensively in the past, but have not touched upon in recent iterations of this report, I still believe that Champagne remains one of the very best opportunities in the present day market for cellaring.
Too much of Champagne purchases tend to get drunk up within a few weeks (or hours) of
acquisition, and too many bottles still tend to be opened as celebratory wines or aperitifs for larger tastings of still wines.
Along these lines, I still want to encourage collectors to start thinking about putting more Champagne into the cellar and aging it in the same fashion as other wines in their collections. This exhortation is not directed exclusively at vintage-dated bottlings, but also the top quality non-vintage bottlings that we see more and more of in the market each and every year.”
View From the Cellar