louis roederer, cristal 2005
WINE ENTHUSIAST
97
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE
93

2005 louis roederer, cristal

Why We're Buying

Cristal is the flagship sparkling wine from Louis Roederer, one of Champagne's oldest and most prestigious producers. The first cuvée dates back to 1876 and was created to satisfy the tastes of Russian royalty. Today, it's a favorite of hip-hop royalty, with name-drops in songs by R. Kelly, The Notorious B.I.G., Raekwon, and Jay-Z. Cristal was created in 1876 to satisfy the demanding tastes of Tsar Alexander II, who insisted on having the best cuvée Champagne from France. Today, Louis Roederer Cristal Brut Champagne remains one of the most renowned wines in the world and serves as the flagship offering in the Roederer portfolio. The 2013 vintage lives up to its regal status, earning a 98-point rating from wine critic James Suckling, while John Gilman called it, “This is a very beautiful vintage of Cristal and a very, very worthy follow-up to the stellar 2012 version!” The 2013 growing season had a challenging start. Then summer arrived in glorious style with copious sunshine, high temperatures, and minimal rain, ideal for ripening chardonnay (40%) and pinot noir (60%). The freshness of the biodynamically-farmed fruit shines through, in part, because 2013 Cristal did not undergo malolactic fermentation. As a result, the final product is full and rich with an acid-rich frame that bodes well for long-term cellaring. Strawberries, green apples, brioche, pear, brioche, flower blossoms, and crushed rocks form the nose with underpinnings of salinity. Every aspect exists in equilibrium, giving 2013 Cristal a harmonious balance. Wine critic William Kelley noted, "Less introverted than its 2012 predecessor, readers won't regret trying a bottle of the 2013 Cristal young—even if I'd recommend forgetting some for a decade too."

Critics Scores

WINE ENTHUSIAST
97

Wine Enthusiast

The iconic Roederer Champagne, Cristal’s latest release, brings a perfect balance of richness and age worthiness. It is full of apple flavor, and the mousse is very fine and almost imperceptible.

ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE
93

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

The 2005 Cristal stands out for its exceptional inner perfume and elegance. Soft, delicate and pretty, the 2005 is a relatively immediate Cristal with all of the signatures very much in the right place. The 2005 doesn’t have the opulence of the 2002 nor the focus of the 2004, but it is a very pretty, if somewhat small-scaled version of this iconic Champagne. I would drink the 2005 while the 2002 and 2004 age. Although Cristal has an impeccable track record when it comes to aging, personally I would not push it with the 2005.

WINE SPECTATOR
94

Wine Spectator

Vibrant and mouthwatering, this offers a range of patisserie pear and apple fruit, candied lemon zest, pastry dough and marzipan notes set on a finely detailed texture, which imparts a great deal of finesse. The lasting finish echoes a smoky mineral note. Drink now through 2025.

JAMES SUCKLING
96

James Suckling

The complexity and youthful freshness here makes a striking Champagne that offers immense pleasure and a certain richness and depth that reflects the style of the vintage with some warmth reflected in the wine. The nose has rich citrus and stone fruits, some white flowers, light creamy honey notes and fresh sweet pastry, it has a toasty thread that has built quickly in the wine. Plenty of body on the palate, it has a wealth of assertive citrus and more exotic fruits too, the power and concentration undeniable, the length impressive and the balance impeccable. Already great drinking here. Slightly higher Chardonnay component at around 45%.