Oscar Wilde never had a problem with quality. “I find I am easily satisfied with the very best,” he said. Put a bottle of vintage Champagne in front of sparkling wine lovers and they’re likely to say the same. There is, of course, a vintage every year, but in the cool climate of Champagne, the most northern grape-growing region of France, not every vintage ripens to be a great one. On average, about three or four of every 10 years is exceptional. Only then is a vintage Champagne produced, made entirely from grapes harvested in the year on the bottle’s label. And other years? There is non-vintage Champagne, a blend of wines from a number of harvests, and thus, the label bears no date.
Since vintage Champagne represents an especially good year, it follows that it usually has the ability to age long and well. Consider the following examples, tasted only a few months ago and still lively, inviting and seductive.
Take Taittinger Brut Millésime 2004. A lighter-bodied Champagne of finesse and delicacy, it shows a hint of vanilla; a pleasant, mild lemony taste; and minuscule bubbles.
Also gossamer in body, Perrier-Jouët Fleur de Champagne Brut 2002 is silky with fruit tastes reminiscent of pear and shows fine balance and, again, a touch of vanilla.
Toasty and fuller-textured, Pol Roger Extra Cuvée de Réserve Brut 2000 is rich and creamy and displays an impressive structure.
The elegant Ayala Brut Millésime 1999 is bright, harmonious and vibrant with citrus overtones and a persistent finish: a delicious Champagne.
Nicolas Feuillatte Cuvée Palmes d’Or 1999 has an assertive nose that reminds one of apples and, beyond that, of toast. It also has a mineral quality and great length in its finish.
Still older is G.H. Mumm Cuvée Lalou Brut 1998, a complex Champagne with excellent structure — 13 years after it was made, still intense and vital.
Consider that vintage Champagne is not produced every year; consider that it is limited in quantity; consider, too, that it is aged for years before being released — and it’s clear why it costs two or three times more than non-vintage Champagne.
Brewing long and deep at its center before radiating out to the rest of Europe, Vienna boasts an illustrious history and lasting intellectual impact. The Austrian capital dates back to Celtic and Romen rule, the latter inhabitants using the center city as a military hub among many other employments.
Whether taking a COVID-19 test before boarding a flight or looking up different travel restrictions before planning your trip, travel has looked a little bit different this past year. With all the extra steps for traveling, American Airlines is committed to finding ways to provide ease and more flexibility and choices for passengers when traveling.
Even in “normal” times, folks gravitate to wellness resorts to jumpstart a healthier lifestyle, destress and be nurtured. In this COVID-19-era state of elevated anxiety, people seek even more natural beauty and caring hospitality, healthy food, fitness activities and beauty and body treatments. Canyon Ranch Lenox also provides an extensive staff of experts offering a multitude of health, wellness and spiritual well-being modalities that alleviate personal issues.
Step right up to the greatest show on Earth as FXExpress Publications, Global Traveler, trazeetravel.com and whereverfamily.com celebrate their 2020 award winners! Join the big top on Dec. 14 as we virtually award the winners of the 17th annual GT Tested Reader Survey awards, including the Airline and Hotel of the Year; the 17th annual Wines on the Wing Airline Wine Survey; the eighth annual Leisure Lifestyle Awards; the sixth annual The Trazees; and the third annual Wherever Awards.
The lights of the aurora borealis appear frequently in the Fairbanks region of Alaska, with a growing number of Aurora Trackers in the area. A new video from Explore Fairbanks features five Fairbanks Aurora Trackers sharing their thoughts and photography on the northern lights.
Remote workers looking for an upgrade from their home offices might want to consider Karisma Hotels & Resorts’ Workcation offer. Those booking an extended stay of 10-plus nights are eligible for discounts of up to 15 percent off best available rates; those booking 20-plus nights enjoy up to 25 percent off. The offer is available at Karisma Hotels & Resorts’ diverse portfolio of properties.