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The Collection 242 blend is dominated by Chardonnay which was of exceptional quality in the 2017 vintage. The perfectly ripe Chardonnay grapes lend the wine its aromas of ripe, sweet fruit complemented by subtle oaky notes. The palate is rich and ripe with a luxurious texture that coats the palate, the signature of an outstanding Chardonnay. The Pinot noir and Meunier grapes from the Vallée de la Marne complete the wine’s broad, luscious, smooth and juicy character. The finish is energetic and fresh.
In September 2021 Collection 242 was launched, replacing Brut Premier. The idea behind Collection 242 was to address the impact in champagne of global warming, "fighting for freshness" is how Chef de Cave Jean-Baptiste Lécaillon described his mission in creating this new champagne. He set about his task in 2013 building a perpetual reserve, adding into it only those wines that displayed those fresh and minerally characters. He also increased the oak reserves, similar to how we use spices in a kitchen. The end result is the perpetual reserve is the "freshening element" and 34% of the blend, 10% oak reserve wines and 56% from the 2017 harvest. The Collection number represents the number of times they have made a non vintage since the inception of the house in 1776.
Founded in 1776, and property of the same family since 1819, Champagne Louis Roederer is today one of the last major champagne houses to be an independent family affair. The annual production of its wines (Brut Premier, Carte Blanche, Brut Vintage, Rosé Vintage, Blanc de Blancs, Cristal, Cristal Rosé) represents just over three million bottles, distributed to 100 countries worldwide.
With the creation of Collection, Louis Roederer is writing a new chapter in the story of Brut Premier through its reinvention. This multi-vintage wine reveals the power of blending, expressed year after year, demonstrating the full extent of its genius. With Collection, Louis Roederer combines its longstanding pursuit of excellence with a new spirit of freedom to achieve its constant objective: to create the best possible champagne with each blend. The Collection number, which represents the number of blends since the foundation of the Louis Roederer Champagne House in 1776, will allow champagne lovers, like collectors, to choose their champagne according to their preferred degree of youth or maturity.
Champagne Louis Roederer owns just over 240 hectares of vineyard located in the Montagne de Reims, Vallée de la Marne and Côte des Blancs. Each vineyard is situated in the finest site, of which 90% are Grand Cru and Premier Cru classified.
For Collection, Louis Roederer has taken the fine art of plot selection even further. From the heart of the Champagne terroir and with a focus on sustainable growing, it has selected the vineyard plots that are perfectly suited to the identity of the new wine and the most appropriate for the year’s specific blend.
Each bunch of grapes that goes into Collection is carefully selected both upstream – in the vineyards – and downstream, at the time of harvesting and pressing, in order to retain only excellence.
There are three dedicated, equally contributing vineyards from which the Collection 242 fruit is sourced:
Grapes grown on Louis Roederer’s own estates are complemented by grapes from our partner winegrowers plots selected from the “Heart of the Terroir”.
The creation of Collection is also influenced by the introduction of a “Perpetual Reserve”, which began with the 2012 vintage and has been enriched each year with wines from the latest harvest stored in large capacity oxygen-free stainless-steel vats. Over the years, this Perpetual Reserve will be further enriched with new wines from each new harvest to create a template of infinite complexity, freshness and energy.
In parallel, Roederer has greatly increased the proportion of oak-aged reserve wines contained in the blends. These wines from previous years and young plots on the Cristal estate, aged in large French oak vats (foudres), are a Louis Roederer hallmark. They provide a perfect point of balance with the freshness created by the Perpetual Reserve, giving the wine greater intensity and honing its salinity.
242nd blend: Perpetual Reserve: 34% (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
Reserve wines aged in oak: 10%(2009, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
2017 Vintage: 56%
Malolactic Fermentation: 34%
2017, the base vintage for Collection 242, was a year of living dangerously! An exceptionally warm and dry winter and spring, but the latter brought severe frosts from 17 to 29 April, setting the sorry record for 12 nights of frost. These were followed by a dull, wet and not particularly hot summer, which ended in an almost tropical (hot and humid) spell at the end of August. This sudden change led to a significant increase in grey rot on the ripening Pinot noir and Meunier grapes. The harvest was fast-paced and completed very quickly demanding precise and methodical selection work, of an unprecedented level even for Roederer.The harvest took place from the 31st August to the 9th September 2017
Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir
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