Mother’s Day Taste Test: 4 Great Brioche-y Champagnes

As you know from this post, I love Krug Champagne because of its heady style – scents and flavors right out of a French patisserie. So how about a Mother’s Day taste-test of several such bottlings to explore the style in-depth. You in?

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I donned my new Champagne t-shirt (got it for Mother’s Day!) for this blind tasting of Krug Grande Cuvee, Bollinger Special Cuvee, Charles Heidsieck Brut Reserve (onboard Delta London and Paris flights starting in June!) and Duval-Leroy Brut Reserve (a past Delta pick). I know what chiefly gives Krug its rich patisserie style: at least 130 component wines, including some wines aged in barrels, and some reserve components dating back decades (did you know: you can enter the bottle ID on their website and get the exact info in that bottle). Here are some “tells” for the other bottlings:

Charles Heidsieck aka Champagne Charlie is known for using as much as 40% aged reserve wines in the blend. To me it tastes the most like Krug.

Bollinger’s secret is barrel aging of many of the blend components (like Krug) as well as a high percentage of Pinot Noir. This gives it incredible power and in my opinion, ageability.

Duval-Leroy’s secret remains a mystery to me, and I have even visited the winery. It has the most alluring pain d’epices (John’s descriptor was gingerbread) scent and flavor. One thing I know – a woman is behind it, and perhaps her feminine touch is part of the secret sauce.

How did I do in the blind tasting? Watch the video to see!