Today (June 20th) is my birthday. In honor of my big day, my husband Bill made me a delicious breakfast of Eggs Benedict. What goes better with Eggs Benedict than a lovely glass of Champagne? Last night, while in the grocery store looking for a few odds and ends to make it through the weekend, I wandered into the Champange section of the wine aisle. Bill grinned and said he was way ahead of me. He already had a bottle of my favorite Champagne waiting at home… Taittinger Brut Reserve.
Taittinger Brut Reserve runs for about $40 at our local Publix, though it can be purchased for less if you shop around. Made in Reims, France, in the heart of the Champagne region, Taittinger Brut Reserve could be thought of as one of the House of Taittinger’s entry level bubblies. It’s reasonably priced, compared to some of their more refined Champagnes, and fairly easy to find.
According to Taittinger’s official Web site, Brut Reserve is composed of a blend of 40% Chardonnay grapes and 60% Pinot Noir grapes from 30 to 50 different vineyards. It’s then aged for three to four years. The bottle of Taittinger Brut Reserve Champagne I’m enjoying today has an alcohol content of 12% by volume.
As I enjoyed my breakfast this morning, sipping my favorite Champagne from a flute style glass, I took note of its color. Taittinger’s Web site describes it as “straw colored”, but to me, it appears to be more of a light yellow. Properly chilled, my first glass of Champagne sparkled with tiny effervescent bubbles that constantly rose to the surface. This little bit of foam, referred to by Taittinger as the “mousse”, is described as both “discreet and persistant”. I would agree with this assessment. One could have a fine time just watching the bubbles rise to the surface in a quiet but impressive enthusiastic show.
Holding the Champagne flute under my nose, I inhaled briefly and immediately detected the aroma of peaches and strawberries. According to Taittinger, I should have also smelled white flowers and vanilla, though to me, peaches really prevailed.
On the palate
Taittinger Champagne crosses my palate with the flavors of fresh fruit, especially peaches, strawberries, and a touch of honey. The Champagne is smooth and velvety on the tongue as the tiny bubbles explode in the mouth. The taste lingers with a long, satisfying finish.
Taittinger Brut Reserve is great as an apertif. It also makes an excellent accompaniment to delicately flavored dishes made with fish, white meats, or eggs. I really enjoyed my birthday bottle of Taittinger Brut Reserve with Eggs Benedict for brunch, but I would equally like this Champagne with an elegantly prepared fish dish or even with dessert.
Last year, I had the opportunity to taste a vintage bottle of Dom Perignon (2000) for the first time. I must say, for all the hype that surrounds Dom Perignon and inflates its pricetag, I would have been just as happy with a $40 bottle of Taittinger Brut Reserve. It really is an excellent and affordable Champagne and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to drink “real bubbly” as opposed to sparkling wine. Happy birthday to me!
For more information, please visit: http://www.taittinger.com/