louis roederer, cristal rose 2008
Interestingly released after the softer 2009 version of this wine, this 2008 vintage is beautifully balanced between crisp fruit and ripe maturity. With its red fruits still in place, it also has a toasty yeasty edge that is sophisticated and enticing. It is a superb wine, delicious to drink now although because of the quality of the vintage it will age for many more years.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Roederer's 2008 Cristal Rosé is a pure but textured, perfectly ripe, round, luscious and mouth-filling Champagne with power and concentration as well as a crystalline, elegant precision and stunning, citrusy freshness. Sourced in four biodynamically farmed plots in Aÿ (two vineyards with old-vines Pinot Noir on calcareous clay soils that can give exceptional ripeness but also crystalline freshness), Avize and Mesnil (one-third), the 2008 is a blend of 55% to 57% Pinot Noir and 43% to 45% Chardonnay and was fermented partly (15%) in large oak casks, with 16% having undergone malolactic fermentation. The unique light peach to pink-salmon color as well as the combination of juicy ripeness and great freshness is the result of "infusion," a vinification method practiced at Roederer since 1974 to combine finesse and mineralization with depth and ripeness. Cristal Rosé is produced with the saignée process after a cold maceration of seven to ten days and, after being blended with Chardonnay, is fermented like a dry wine. The delicate and subtle bouquet of the 2008 Cristal Rosé is intense and fruity, intertwining red berry and sweet cherry aromas with floral flavors and a touch of caramel and nuts. On the palate, the 2008 is very elegant, fine, pure, precise and fresh but nevertheless dense, intense and fleshy, with lots of powdery chalk and a pure, very fresh, chalky-salty finish with zesty citrus flavors. The 2008 should have enormous aging potential. The Rosé was disgorged in March 2017, and the dosage is eight grams per liter.
Like fine china, this graceful rosé Champagne is all about delicacy paired with form. Vibrant acidity provides well-honed structure, fleshed out by the detailed flavor range of white cherry, slivered almond, candied ginger, pink grapefruit pith and spring blossom as this rides the satiny mousse. Minerally smoke and chalk notes echo on the finish. Drink now through 2030.