Brut Rosé 2015
Pol Roger Rosé Vintage 2015
Champagne’s geographical location engenders unpredictable weather. For this reason, since their foundation in 1849 Pol Roger has observed the tradition of not releasing a vintage-dated Champagne unless the climatic conditions permit the production of grapes of outstanding ripeness. A vintage Champagne must, above all else, be a balanced Champagne. This balance depends on the right blend of healthy grapes, a good potential alcohol and correct acidity. The first criterion for declaring a vintage wine is its capacity to age. Devotees who have the patience to age their Champagnes are rewarded with a more complex and richer wine.
The Story of the Vintage
The year began with one of the warmer and wetter winters of the past 10 years, with high instances of sunshine in February and March. This developed into a particularly hot April where budbreak occurred in the middle of the month, and troubling drought-like conditions setting in from mid-May to mid-August. A blessing of two to three weeks’ worth of rain helped plump the grapes out and assuage the till-then stifling vintage. With some worries of rot, the weather eventually turned delightfully clear, sunny and cool in September. The threat of rot contained, harvest took place from 2nd to 18th September with a must potential of 10.4% ABV, and total acidity 7.1 gH2SO4/L. A unique vintage as a result of the warmth and dryness, the resulting Champagne is expressive and full of freshness.
- Cépage (Pinot Noir) 50% 50%
- Cépage (Chardonnay) 35% 35%
- Cépage (Pinot Noir Vinified En Rouge) 15% 15%
- Dosage (8g/L) 8% 8%
Vinification and Maturation
The must undergoes two débourbages (settlings), one at the press house immediately after pressing and the second, a débourbage à froid, in stainless steel tanks at 6°C over a 24 hour period. A slow cool fermentation with the temperature kept under 18ºC takes place in stainless steel, with each variety and each village kept separate until final blending. The wine undergoes a full malolactic fermentation. Secondary fermentation takes place in bottle at 9ºC in the deepest Pol Roger cellars (33 metres below street level) where the wine is kept until it undergoes remuage (riddling) by hand, a rarity in Champagne nowadays. The Rosé is aged for a minimum of six years in the cellars, plus an additional six months for the UK market. The very fine and persistent mousse for which Pol Roger is renowned owes much to these deep, cool and damp cellars.
Pol Roger does not make a non-vintage Rosé, preferring to release only in vintage years. The Brut Rosé Vintage 2015 is produced from a blend of 50% Pinot Noir and 35% Chardonnay drawn from some 20 Premier and Grands crus on the Montagne de Reims and the Côte des Blancs. In order to obtain its delicate colour and subtle nose 15% Pinot Noir, from selected vineyards in Bouzy, Ambonnay and Cumieres, is vinified “en rouge” and added to the blend prior to the second fermentation.
The wine is salmon-pink in colour with tints of orange, set off by fine bubbles. Its initial nose offers a good aromatic expression dominated by red fruit, such as cherry and raspberry, along with rose petals, all leading to a beautiful freshness. As it warms, notes of candied cherries and candy bring complexity to the ensemble. The palate is in balance with the nose – both of equal intensity and richness. The wine is fresh on entry to the palate with citrus notes of blood orange, then shows itself to be generous and enveloping as it reveals its red fruit notes. With a perfectly balanced palate, it offers good length. This vintage’s character is supported by power and vinosity.