Two family meals with interesting winesdimanche, 6 mars 2016

We had just left my son some days ago in Miami and he is back in France for his monthly visit to our family company downstream steel industries. He arrived this morning. He sent me a whatsapp to ask me if I want that he buys things for dinner. We’ll both be alone since my wife is in the south. I have not read the message but I went to the Kabyle grocer take a shredded smoked ham and camembert and a baguette at the bakery. My son made a single purchase, « negro heads », which is an institution in our family has always peppered since the ban of the title as « tête de nègre » is not politically correct. I open a Champagne Philipponnat Clos des Goisses 2000. What strikes me is the serenity of this champagne. It looks like a decathlon champion, gifted athlete in the ten disciplines. It is comfortable and bright enough, not a typical character that would be too assertive. This is a great champagne, consistent, and that does not need to show its muscles to be loved. It can also be a Champagne for thirst.

We talk about everything and nothing, champagne listens to us and is rapidly dried as after the passage of wildebeest on the Serengeti high plateaus. Nothing would go with the chocolate meringue, but we will not be swayed by obstacles. I open a Champagne Dom Perignon 1996 Œnothèque disgorged in 2008. The color of the bottle is beautiful, with tones of alcoves. The scent of champagne is incredibly intense and the wine is bright as a sword. There is even in her finery strength metal armor. It is large and would arouse our applause if it was not a Dom Perignon. And in this judgment I can accept that it is I and I alone who has this reaction. Because with an imperial flavor and a samurai vivacity, what more. I am perhaps the only who regrets that there are more courteous romance which makes Dom Perignon for me. But this does not spoil our fun. This is a huge champagne, in a different way than an original disgorging of Dom Perignon that I like.

A nice little bottle of Yellow Chartreuse of the 20ies maybe, certainly before the war, is almost dry. I say we make him a spell. The liquid fat, thick, the fragrance is sweet and peppery. Undeniably there has been evaporation but the message has still sufficient herbs suggested. The story of the monks, the memory of Umberto Eco, all jostling in our brains and our language, the thickness of the liquor whose licorice is striking has something religious.

The next day, it’s a real surprise. Dom Perignon, remained in the refrigerator door with its cork, now delivers a much quieter perfume, and has abandoned the warrior side of yesterday. And taste, deliciously romantic is the most beautiful expression of what I like of Dom Perignon. It transcends the 1996 Dom Perignon I love. It would seem that it must be thoroughly aerated to regain the infinite romantic grace of Dom Perignon. My desire of finding again the romanticism was fulfilled. Thank you to Dom Perignon for sending me this sign.


Sunday we have lunch with my family, my son, my youngest daughter and her two children. For an appetizer, there will be a sausage with chicken curious to taste, the Andouille sausage and rillettes. I chose a Champagne Perrier-Jouët Belle Époque Rosé 1979. The bottle is very pretty and very pronounced pink enhances transparency by large white flowers of the Belle Époque design. The cork resists me. I give the bottle to my son who does not manage to open it. With a nutcracker what had to happen happens, upper cork shears and remains lower cap in the neck. I can prick the corkscrew and I note down the poor quality cap because few pieces fall into the wine, and there are not the slightest pressure and any pschitt. It’s funny, because champagne has its bubble and everything sparkling. The color of an intense pink is very beautiful; the nose is mild and pleasant in the mouth and the lively contrast with the absence of pressure at the opening. Let’s face it, it’s a beautiful rosé. It is bright and, supreme quality for a rosé, it is champagne. I often accuse rosés of not being champagne any more. This is the beautiful and personality. Only rillettes made with it as sausages and chitterlings are too strong for the delicate brew.

On the red label chicken with mashed potatoes, I opened a little before lunch Chapelle-Chambertin Domaine Ponsot 1999. It is a wine that I hardly know. What impresses me is its youth. It looks like a wine of the year, as it has the greenness. It almost sounds like a young wine of Loire. It has a nice bitterness and it is hard enough. It has not roundness and charm of the wines of Gevrey-Chambertin. It has lots of character and great accuracy. It is a noble wine. It just lacks a spark of fun. But we’ll see tonight if additional ventilation makes it more urban.

On diced mango, champagne shows brilliant. Perrier-Jouët has made a very great rosé in 1979.