| Touch wood. Knock on wood. No matter how you say it, it’s a phrase that the superstitious know all too well. I was once married to baseball, both as player and spectator, so that qualifies me as the superstitious type. Funny thing is, you’d think I’d have learned by now to keep my mouth shut, but I don’t, ergo I suffer. I can’t help it, when there is hope for joy and happiness, I am enthusiastic. I share my enthusiasm with the people in my life. So much so, that I believe I jinx myself. The hard part is the aftermath, you know, shaking my head when my sister asks me how my date with so and so went and such. I am not setting myself up for any jinxing with this email, there will be Champagne popped tomorrow. It may be my brother and his contingent doing the popping, or it may be me and mine … we’ll see. Life’s too short for not popping Champagne, so we strongly encourage you to do so.
It’s not just for celebrations, but if there is cause for celebration, one must have Champagne. Just don’t jinx things like I did. No. Wait. I didn’t. It wasn’t my fault, it was my brother’s. The 2002 Giants lost the World Series because of him! It’s a long story, so I’ll spare you, but it had something to do with my having a bottle of Champagne in an ice chest in the trunk of my car on that fateful day. I will not have a bottle of Champagne in the trunk of my car tomorrow morning when I watch the deciding matches of the English Premiership. However, there is a chance that I may have some later. If it does happen, it will be the Non-Vintage Grand Cru Les Mesnil Blancs de Blancs from Pascal Doquet!
| Grower Champagne is a term we keep hearing more and more. All of the famous names of the region belong to the negociants who source their grapes to satisfy demand. They are owned by big corporations, or they are big corporations, in their own right. Pssst! It’s cool and hip to support the Champagne makers that grow their own fruit. Cool, hip, and rewarding, that is. You know where the grapes are grown. In this case, Grand Cru Le Mesnil sur Oger. You know the grower. In this case, Pascal Doquet. He looks like Gene Wilder … a little. He and his wife Laure own and run this uber-hip Domaine in the town of Vertus (which is near Avize). The Doquet name has quite the reputation. Being the exclusive California distributor of his wines keep our fingers on the pulse of demand, and we must say that for such a small producer, Doquet has many fans in the Golden State. His wines from Le Mesnil topping the list of what they love. And why not? Made from 100% Chardonnay, grown in one of the most prized Grand Cru vineyards, this wine has verve, vibrancy, and complexity that would and does impress the most discerning Champagne connoisseur. Here’s what The Wine Advocate’sAntonio Galloni had to say about this wine: “The NV Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru is a rich wine with an expansive, perfumed core of apricots, flowers, honey, brioche, sweet spices and smoke. The wine shows a good deal of complexity in a style that achieves terrific balance between ripeness and minerality. This is a great choice for drinking now and over the next few years. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2012. Pascal Doquet is a small, artisan producer based in Vertus. This is a beautiful set of wines loaded with personality. – 90 points”.
No, I’m not jinxing anything by sending an email about Champagne on the night before we find out who will be Champions of England. My brother supports the other guys (boo!). (Really … what is wrong with him?) (I guess nothing. They have the most fans of any team world-wide) So, either way, someone in my family will be celebrating. Ha ha! But tomorrow, my brother won’t have access to Pascal Doquet’s Grand Cru Le Mesnil Blancs de Blancs though! Come on you Blues! – Peter Zavialoff
Pictures from importer Robert Kacher Selections.