Songs and poems have been written about it, wars have been fought in its name, and its image is so iconic that it immediately connotes style, luxury and pleasure. I could make the argument that Champagne is the most imitated, most unique, most recognized and most archetypal wine on the planet, and few would argue. No other wine inspires the kind of reaction that Champagne does; and no other wine embodies celebration like it. Pop open a bottle of good Champagne, and you do more than bring people together. You get them to celebrate life.
Today, I've chosen one of IWM's favorite bottles of grower Champagne to Spotlight, Roger Coulon Brut Reserve de l'Hommee. This non-vintage Champagne is stellar. It's rich but bright, complex but easy to understand, precise but easy-going. My cellar is never without at least a bottle or two from Roger Coulon, and this Brut Reserve often sits on my cellar's shelves waiting for a good occasion--or just any occasion! I love Champagne, and I'll bet that you do too. Champagne makes moments feel sophisticated and special, and this Roger Coulon bottle is around $50. It's hard to beat that price for a bottle of beautifully made grower Champagne.
There are two big beautiful bottles waiting below for those of you with cellar space and great taste. First, there's a double magnum of Bruno Giacosa 2007 Barolo Falletto di Serralunga. 2007 was warm, and this Barolo is like a velvet suit coat: perfectly structured and unbelievably seductive. The large format means it'll age really nicely. Next, there's a five-liter bottle of '81 Tignanello. The lower air-to-wine ratio in large format bottles helps the wine mature more slowly, and this '81 Tig is a knockout. Whoever scores these Giacosa and Antinori wines will have some amazing dinner parties.