92 Insider Points
Showing a dazzling soft, salmon pink in the glass, it's got a lovely foaming mousse and subtle red fruits dry that lead to an elegant, dry palate of brioche, soft raspberry and a touch of green apple. Made in the Champagne Methode with the second fermentation taking place in the bottle, it's precisely what Champagne fans will appreciate with a plate of raw salmon sashimi, friends as an everyday pleasure. 92 Points - JZ Nov '18
70% Chardonnay, 20% Chenin Blanc 10% Pinot Noir.
This is bubbly with an exceptional history. Crafted from Champagne's iconic, Dom Pérignon first homeland (read on for more on that historical fact), it's a wine that had our Panel "Ohh-ing" and "Awe-ing". It displays the granduer of the first bubbly on record dating back to the 1500's in Crémant de Limoux, it's a wine wonderfully made for Champagne lovers.
The history is a great talking point. “The monks of Saint Hilaire Abbey near Limoux perfected the winemaking method for sparkling wines around 1531,” says Jean Baptiste Terlay, head winemaker at Gerard Bertrand, which produces a number of excellent sparkling wines. “When Dom Perignon” — yes, that Dom Perignon — “made a pilgrimage to Saint Hilaire Abbey, he was taught the method and experimented it on Champagne wines when he came back to Hautvillers Abbey.” So the Dom himself learned from the monks in Limoux.
Vintner Gérard Bertrand is a native of the region and has a reputation locally and abroad for making some of the most serious and award-winning wines in the Languedoc-Roussillon. A lovely toasty/yeasty entry is followed by ripe red berry fruit on the palate and a creamy, delicate froth of dancing bubbles. Pretty much everyone loves pink sparklers. In a pricey category, this is one heck of a bargain and offers all the fun and elegance of a Rosé Champagne without the hype.
- The word Crémant describes a sparkling wine made outside of the region of Champagne but in the same, quality-conscious “méthode traditionnelle.” As in the fine wines of Champagne, Crémant de Limoux bubblies undergo a secondary fermentation in the bottle, which creates a fine, elegant bead of tiny bubbles.
- Gérard Bertrand owns and oversees a number of estates in the South of France, and is considered among the top proprietors in the Languedoc-Roussillon. Bertrand was born in Narbonne and was raised among the vines. After 10 years as a professional rugby player in Paris, Gérard returned to the South to dedicate himself to making wine and to promoting the great wines of France’s Languedoc-Roussillon.
- Champagne isn’t the only excellent French sparkler out there — or even the oldest. That title goes to Crémant de Limoux, from the southwest of France — Champagne’s lesser-known predecessor. (Crémant refers to a particular style of French sparkling wine; de Limoux means, well, from Limoux.)
- The oldest vineyards in all of France grow in the Languedoc, planted there originally by the ancient Greeks. The best of the vineyards here sit on soil rich in chalk and limestone with varying degrees of gravel, and the region is known today for some of the best red, white and rosé wines grown anywhere.
From the winery:
Delicate bubbles and an extraordinary vivacity on the palate, with a rich, indulgent texture.
The Chardonnay grape is the key ingredient in this blend, contributing to the Crémant’s well-balanced texture and providing the delicate bubbles. The Chenin contribute to Crémant’s vivacity and in time, reveal its exceptional richness. The Pinot grapes supply the exceptional colour.
Gérard Bertrand’s Crémant rosé boasts a beautiful, salmon-pink robe with glimmering reflections. Delicate bubbles and an extraordinary vivacity on the palate, with a rich, indulgent texture.
From the winery:
Crémant de Limoux is produced 25 km south of Carcassonne, from some of the highest vineyards (250 to 500 metres above sea-level) in the Haute Vallée de l’Aude, and indeed the Languedoc. The appellation is framed by the Chalabrais plateaux to the west and the Lacamp plateaux to the east. Stretching out towards the Pyrénées, the appellation is remarkably consistent across its 41 communes.
The natural protection surrounding three sides of the appellation limits coastal influences and creates an oceanic climate with semi-continental tendancies, including frequent rainfall and a broad temperature range.