lovers have one more reason to celebrate life. Canard
Duchêne, one of the top ten Champagnes makes a grand
entry in Delhi. Classic white Brut and Rose as also
the Grand Cuvee Charles VII White and Rose. Subhash
Arora had the pleasure of tasting and dinking these
easy drinking bubblies at Hotel Hyatt last Thursday.
15 seconds a CD is opened in France. The 6 million
bottle company may be a David compared to the 53 million
bottle selling Goliath Moet Chandon but even today
60% of its production is sold in France.
'The reason perhaps lies in the
fact that this 140 year old Champagne House was under
the rule of LVMH from 1978 to 2003, who popularised
it in France,' says the young, bubbly and vivacious
Stephanie Phederphil, International Sales Director
of the €3.7 billion turnover company.
'It is a very convivial brand. Our
Cellar master Laurent Fédou emphasises roundness,
easy to drink wine and looks for elegance.' The bubbly
used to be served at Tsar Nicolas II of Russia in
the 1890s and is served at many horse races in UK,
underlying the company philosophy, now being owned
by the privately held group of Alain Thienot.'
The wine has quite a respectable
reputation and is very popular in the international
market where it is positioned favourably and close
to Moet Hennessy, Laurent Perrier, Taittinger, Bollinger
and Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin.
The importers, Fine Wines N More
partnered by a young lady, Dharti Desai who shuttles
between the Desi Dharti and the Yank Land and is very
Direct in her Marketing profession , and the sincere
and serious Sumedh Mandla who started his wine selling
career four years ago as the partner of Brandwagon.
The company is all set to add CD to the DP, MC, MDP,
LP, VCP and such commonly used lingo of Champagne.
Classic Cuvee is made from 60 Crus from 300 vineyards.
One can taste the savoury, fruity Pinot Noir (40%)
in this Champagne. Pinot Meunier has an equal portion
with Chardonnay carrying the rest of the proportion.
The citrus aromas are carried through the citrus flavour
which has a touch of peaches and green apples. What
is different in the wine though is the lively acidity
without harshness. Many types of champagne have very
high acidity that can be deliciously refreshing in
small sizes, but the acid can be hard on the digestive
system. Indians are particularly not fond of this
fresh crispness . The classic CD is softer and more
gentle, and an ideal an aperitif though it will go
well with fish dishes which would go even better with
the Classic Rosé that followed. (Rating )
Fuller bodied with a touch of Pinot
tannins and a beautiful salmon pink colour which may
not find favour with many as an attractive, marks
this Rose a favourite match with fish and chicken
made in red sauces. It is not as refreshingly crisp
as the white. (Rating )
If you are in a mood to splurge
to celebrate a special occasion or you convert your
money into Euros and Pounds before spending, the Grand
Cuvee is an excellent way of squeezing the best out
of your dollar. Less acidic, with a citrus whiff that
explodes into your face and suddenly leaves you wondering
where all the flowers went, it has more body, great
mouthfeel with millions of those tiny bubbles dancing
on your palate, which you can still visualise after
that sip has gone down. (Rating )
The best was reserved for the last.
Again, the Grand Cuvee Rose NV was a medium body (not
bone) dry wine that had a beautiful colour, balanced
acidity, very good structure and persistent after
taste. A more concentrated wine with coupled flavours
that can handle a range of foods, especially sea foods
like crabs, squid, lobster and of course fish. (Rating
Someone asked me in the evening at
the bubbly dinner hosted by Hyatt Regency where the
official spoken language was French, despite the affable
GM Roger Dienhard's Swiss/German leanings. My answer
to which one I liked the most was best, I think was
pretty honest. If I had to drink free champagne I
would go for the Copper colour and poetically expressive
GC Rose. But if I had to pay for it, I won't mind
settling for the Classic.
Justifying my reason, I selected
this Rose with taster's menu at the newly opened China
Kitchen where I had to go for a degustation. The grandeur
of the place and the ecstatic delicious dishes notwithstanding,
the GC Brut Rose, stood its ground pared with crab,
salmon and fish dishes. Even the gentle and polite
fried rice did not have to flinch while going down
with this beauty. Real add value for the food, this
versatile pink bubbly was.