Champagne vintage rating from 1815 to today
Differences, quality and shelf life
In the following the Champagne Vintages from the year 1815 to the current vintages presented and evaluated. The treatise gives an overview of the respective weather conditions, special conditions and qualities of the individual champagne vintages. The advantages of the champagne vintages are emphasized, but also their deficits. The evaluations of the Champagne vintages are basically split into the northern and southern Champagne regions. Nevertheless, an essay about champagne vintages can only provide a first overview. There are always individual champagnes that present themselves atypically to the vintage.
A vintage champagne can reflect the culmination of any winemaker's art. However, this requires a good vintage, with ripe grapes, rich in extract, with good structure, rich in fruit and with sufficient acidity. Champagne vintages are as variable as the weather and the annual weather conditions. Contrary to the philosophy of a German winemaker, a Champagne winemaker creates vintage Champagne only in correspondingly good vintages. Champagne, always a pleasureVintages lacking in ripeness, fruit, structure and/or acidity are not declared as vintage Champagne and are kept as reserve wines or for vintageless Champagne. This ensures the highest level of quality and enjoyment.
These are the reasons why not every vintage brings forth a vintage champagne. Even if the cuvée of a champagne is produced from a similar selection of grapes in the following year, the vintages will always differ significantly in taste.
The wine-growing area of the Champagne is large. It extends in north-south direction on about 150 km. From this and from the most different variables of the locations of the vineyards results that an evaluation of champagne vintages can deliver only a relatively general overview and certain style direction of a vintage. The regional and grape variety differences are too great. Thus, not every vintner and/or every champagne house presents a vintage champagne for every vintage. The good reputation alone forbids to create a vintage champagne out of every vintage.
Due to the great distance between the wine-growing regions of northern and southern Champagne, the ratings of the Champagne vintages are divided separately, into Champagne North and Champagne South. Under Champagne North are the regions Montagne de RheimsVallée de la Marne and the Côte des Blancs. The appellation Champagne South represents the wine-growing areas of the Côte des Bar.
Champagne has always been in high demand since the beginning, especially in England in the 19th century. At the end of the 18th century, champagnes were clearly more expensive than Bordeaux wines. The evaluation of the champagne vintages, particularly what concerns the 19th century, are not reflected completely. Only vintages were included whose dates are known and which were also well-founded researchable.