Arguably, no other wine transforms with age as dramatically—and reliably—as great Champagne.
The aromas evolve into rich scents of hazelnuts and crème brûlée. The mousse softens, becoming creamier and more sensuous. And they magically gain in richness, with an opulence and persistence of flavor that young Champagnes just don’t have.
And the best opportunity for a great aged Champagne experience is found in bottles late-released from a producer’s library of old vintages. Often labeled vinothèque or oenothèque, they offer the ideal harmony of developed complexity and freshness, through their perfect provenance, and the skill of the house’s chef de cave in judging the perfect time for disgorgement.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, The Rare Wine Co. was the first US merchant to make a meticulously sourced portfolio of aged Champagne part of its regular offerings. And even as demand has skyrocketed, we’ve never let down in our quest for old Champagne, especially late releases from producers with whom we enjoy a privileged relationship.
For this offer, we’ve gone through our library and come up with an impressive line-up of late-released Champagnes—the great majority of them also late-disgorged. We’re pleased to offer them at a 10% discount off our usual low price, with the purchase of three or more Champagnes from this offer.
Despite its dramatic surge in popularity over the past 20 years, the idea of deliberately aging Champagne for later drinking is far from new. The producers themselves always knew of the magical transformation. But it was a secret not yet understood by the world.
As Swedish authority Richard Juhlin has written, “the winemakers of Champagne have always saved old vintages that they have stored sur pointe (inverted, ʻon their heads’) up until they are disgorged.” But what they were really doing was taking advantage of what many consider the world’s most ideal natural wine cellars.
Champagne’s deep pure chalk caves boast extraordinary conditions for aging wine. Not only is the temperature in these cellars very low—around 50 degrees—it is consistently so, the same at high summer as in the dead of winter. The constant high humidity of the chalk ensures that the corks never dry out. And the bottles move only a very short distance before being laid to rest.
This environment allows them to evolve very slowly, maximizing the inherent complexity and elegance of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier grown in the region’s chalk soils and blended from what can be a staggering number of sites. The results are Champagnes that are multidimensional in their developed nuance and texture, while still breathtakingly fresh.
The Way to Save
You can browse the complete list below, using code OLDFIZZ at checkout to receive the special 10% discount when you order 3 or more bottles. All wines are subject to prior sale, of course.
|1982||1982 Bollinger R.D. (Disgorged 1994)||RJ94||2||$495.00||add|
|1985||1985 Bollinger R.D. (Disgorged 06/2008)||ST93 /
|1996||1996 Bollinger R.D. (Disgorged 11/2010)||AG96 /
|1996||1996 Bollinger R.D. (Disgorged 07/2007) 1.5 L||1.5 L||AG96 /
|1999||1999 Bollinger R.D. (Disgorged 08/2012) 1.5 L||1.5 L||RJ94||3||$385.00||add|
|Please Call (415) 319-9000 for Availability|
|1976||1976 Lanson Vintage Collection 1.5 L||1.5 L||RJ95 /
|1979||1979 Lanson Vintage Collection 1.5 L||1.5 L||RJ94||4||$950.00||add|
|1985||1985 Lanson Vintage Collection||RJ94 /
|1985||1985 Lanson Vintage Collection 1.5 L||1.5 L||RJ94 /
|1988||1988 Lanson Vintage Collection 1.5 L||1.5 L||RJ94||6||$645.00||add|
|1989||1989 Lanson Vintage Collection||TS95||6||$259.00||add|
|1990||1990 Lanson Vintage Collection||JG94||6||$250.00||add|
|1990||1990 Lanson Vintage Collection 1.5 L||1.5 L||JG94||6||$599.00||add|
|1996||1996 Lanson Vintage Collection 1.5 L||1.5 L||RJ94 /
|2000||2000 Philipponnat Clos des Goisses (Disgorged 05/2015)||JG96+ /
|1992||1992 Philipponnat Clos des Goisses L.V. (Disgorged 2016)||AG97 /
|1991||1991 Philipponnat Clos des Goisses Vinotheque (Disgorged 2002)||ST93+||1||$435.00||add|
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