Taittinger "La Française" Brut Champagne
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The deliciously delicate Taittinger NV Brut La Francaise L2383PK01300 is strikingly buoyant and dominated by subtle scents of yeast-tinged flowers and foliage – honeysuckle and mint immediately come to mind – that allude to its roughly one-quarter Meunier component, with a luscious matrix of lime-drenched honeydew melon and apple well-supported by discreet residual sugar leading to a sustained and refreshing finish. Hints of toasted almond and vanilla-tinged cookie dough lend a faintly confectionary cast that manages to harmonize with the dominant fruitiness and florality, while piquancy of apple and lime pit serve for counterpoint. That Taittinger’s standard-bearing cuvees (outside the U.S., the cuvee in question is called “Brut Reserve”) are relatively short on Pinot Noir by standards of that genre is obvious on tasting. Enjoy this distinctive success over the coming year. (DS)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(60% pinot noir and pinot meunier and 40% chardonnay; L3208NA02500): Light gold. Ripe pit fruits, orange pith and toasty lees on the nose. Toasty and velvety in texture, offering ripe nectarine and poached pear flavors with a bracing kick of bitter citrus zest. Finishes sappy and long, with lingering smokiness and a touch of sweet butter.
Tasted from a half bottle, the rich and complex flavors of Brut La Française show just that extra touch of maturity. The wine has peach and almond flavors that contrast well with the taut, nervy edge. It's full in the mouth and ripe, and works well both as an apéritif and a food Champagne.
Subtle overall, offering a creamy mousse and a pleasing juiciness to the notes of apricot tart, slivered almond, orchard blossom and apple. Drink now.
So precise and refined that it approaches the delicate end of the sparkling wine spectrum, this non-vintage bottling delivers creamy yeast notes with hints of chalk and vanilla and an appropriate bit of citrusy, slightly angular fruit in its light-medium depth aromas. Finely bubbled and fairly insistent with a glimpse of inner richness that reminds a tad of California-born bubblies, it can be enjoyed by itself or with light foods.
50% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay and 10% Pinot Meunier.