Champagne with panache
A family business
Champagne Taittinger is one of the only major family-run estates in the region. The winery was founded by industrialist Pierre Taittinger when he purchased Château de la Marquetterie in Reims, and then managed by his sons. In 2005, it was sold to an American fund, only to be bought back by Pierre-Emmanuel in 2006, which proved to be an exceptional year for the wine as well. His children, Vitalie and Clovis, are now involved in running the business, and their sparkling Nocturne product line is attracting a new client base.
Chardonnay, an iconic variety for Taittinger
Whereas most growers in the Champagne region rely on Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, François Taittinger has always preferred Chardonnay. His belief was that its lightness, elegance and mineral notes would appeal to customers—and he was right! Chardonnay has become the estate’s signature and is included in all vintages. In fact, Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs, a wine that delivers white flowers on the nose and citrus fruit on the palate, is made entirely of Chardonnay.
Nocturne: A new approach to champagne
Champagne crafted with a cocktail approach, what a terrific idea! Offering a mellow attack and sweetness that evokes the most sinful baked goods, this dry champagne has won over even the most critical palates. The bottle design, which resembles both a glimmering cityscape and a disco ball, appeals to a new client base with an appreciation for beautiful objects—and exciting nightlife.
Fifty years ago, the estate’s winegrowers decided to breed their vines selectively. This involves cloning the best plants by removing vine shoots. At the time, the method was outmoded, but for the Taittingers, it proved to be an excellent decision. The vineyard’s quality was maintained and the regional genetic heritage that is responsible for the wine’s personality was preserved. Today, 95% of the Taittinger’s vines are descendants of this technique.
Most memorable wine-tasting experience
“A bottle of Champagne Taittinger Brut Réserve served chilled with a spicy chicken and fish sandwich. We enjoyed this meal in a dugout canoe on a tributary of the Amazon River in French Guyana.” — Pierre-Emmanuel Taittinger