x
  • Country ranking ?

    731
  • Producer ranking ?

    20
  • Decanting time

    15min
  • When to drink

    now to 2035
  • Food Pairing

    Shrimps in cream curry sauce

The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's 50 best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.

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The Story

Taittinger Comtes de Champagne is the finest expression of the world famous wine from one of the greatest Champagne Houses. First produced in 1952, Comtes is made from 100% Chardonnay grapes from 5 Grand Cru sites in the Côte des Blancs. Showing a pristine pale yellow colour with very light, abundant bubbles which rise uniformly to form a fine mousse. The evocative bouquet opens with notes of pears and fresh cute white flowers. Left in the glass for a time, the nose develops a richness and density of pure character. Once on the palate, Comtes is lively, direct and precise with flavours of candied lemon zest and fresh pineapple. The balance is something to behold. This Champagne's marriage of finesse and aromatic intensity is a promise of further potential, but already offers very pleasurable drinking.

The blend. Produced in the cellars of the former Saint-Nicaise abbey (13th century) in Reims, Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs receives all the lavish care and attention it needs to reach its peak. Every bottle of Comtes de Champagne strictly adheres to all of the following to make it such a rare luxury and the connoisseurs choice :

The Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs is composed exclusively of Chardonnay grown in the five villages of the Côte des Blancs, which are classified as Grands Crus: Avize, Chouilly, Cramant, Mesnil-sur-Oger, Oger.

• It is only produced when the harvest is of exceptional quality worthy of a vintage year.

• Only the wine from the first press – the Cuvée – is used: a sure guarantee of finesse.

• 5% of the wines used to make it have been aged for 4 months in new oak barrels (a third of which are renewed every year), enhancing the intrinsic qualities and complexities of the final blend.

• Only after slow and patient ageing for almost 10 years in the Saint-Nicaise chalk pits (Crayères) in 18 metres underground does this cuvée of exceptional quality come out into the light. 

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Wine Information

Comtes de Champagne Blanc de blancs 2004. Despite its unremarkable weather conditions, 2004 was an exuberant vintage. Although the winter was cold, there was no extended period of intense low temperatures. Spring was very pleasant with little rainfall. Blossoming was very steady, beginning in mid-June amidst relatively cool temperatures.
A mild and seldom sunny, summer was dry until mid-August when a much needed period of rain arrived. The return of the sun and warmth at the beginning of September then helped the fruit ripen. The harvest, which started with the Chardonnays on 20 September, proved to be one of the most abundant in the history of the Champagne region. The grapes were very healthy and of excellent quality. The Chardonnays were of remarkable quality: balanced, complex, long, fresh and invigorating. The Pinots Noirs were elegant and well structured.


The blend.
Produced in the cellars of the former Saint-Nicaise abbey (13th century) in Reims, Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs receives all the lavish care and attention it needs to reach its peak. Every bottle of Comtes de Champagne strictly adheres to all of the following to make it such a rare luxury and
the connoisseurs choice :
• The Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs cuvée is made entirely from Chardonnays from only the best vines in the prestigious Côte des Blancs.
• It is only produced when the harvest is of exceptional quality worthy of a vintage year.
• Only the wine from the first press, the Cuvée, is used: a sure guarantee of finesse.
• 5% of the wines used to make it have been aged for 4 months in new oak barrels (a third of which are renewed every year), enhancing the intrinsic qualities and complexities of the final blend.
• Only after slow and patient ageing for almost 10 years in the Saint-Nicaise chalk pits (Crayères) does this cuvée of exceptional quality come out into the
light.

"We will never produce a large quantity of Comtes de Champagne because the technical characteristics we require so that this cuvee can be a very great wine are essentially unique in Champagne and very financially demanding. A triumphant blend of force and elegance, the Comtes de Champagne displays an eternal youth that it derives from the greatest Chardonnays of our province. Connoisseurs will appreciate it."

Pierre-Emmanuel Taittinger
President of Champagne Taittinger

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Vintage 2004

A great example of how large yields do not necessarily mean poor quality in Champagne. As a reaction to the previous year's low yields, the vines produced one of the largest crops on record. The growing season proceeded without major difficulties but the bumper crop called for bud thinning. August brought about cooler weather and some rains, increasing the risk of rot. The massive crop, averaging 13,990 kg/ha, was picked from September 18th onwards. The quality was a pleasant surprise; vibrant wines with appropriate intensity, refined charm and refreshing lightness. This vintage impresses me more and more, and I feel tempted to give it the full five stars. It comes with a rare balance of freshness, lightness, yet fine aromatic intensity. Post-release, this vintage has proven to be slow to age, and elegant wines are likely to keep on ageing gracefully. Dom Pérignon and Louis Roederer Cristal both excelled.

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Latest Pro-tasting notes

56 tasting notes

Tasting note

color

Light, Green-Yellow and Clear

ending

Long, Smooth, Lingering and Acidic

flavors

Vanilla, Apricot, Toasty, Steely and Citrus

nose

Open, Seductive, Fresh and Tempting

recommend

Yes

taste

Average in Acidity, Low alcohol content, Balanced, Well-Integrated, Perfectly balanced, Youthful, Light, Elegant, Fresh, Perfumed and Dry

Verdict

Well-rounded and Impressive

Written Notes

Light, straw yellow. Intense, pronounced toasty nose with roasted coffee, mint and honeydew melon. Dry, rich, toasty and intense mousse. Long, round, and seductive finish with refreshing mineral, gentley toasty and spicy notes.

  • 95p
Comtes de Champagne 2004 Very similar to last time with toasty ripeness, touch of dosage on the mid-palate but long, fine finish that has the right mineral grip to last. Needs a few years. 2015-2030 93p.
  • 93p
Flaskan kom direkt från Fondbergs referenslager, som är den svenska importören. Under denna provning provade flertalet av oss denna skönhet för första gången. Stendamm, typ makadam-grus efter ett sommarregn. Underbar doft! Ultraung, nästan påfrestande mineralfrisk och stenhårt stenigt rostad. Inte samma mjukhet och generositet som många odlarblanc de blancs. Allt finns dock där och tiden kommer att skänka klassisk skönhet. En extremt liten årgång i volym. Det har även smygit sig in en liten del Vertus i denna årgång.
  • 94p
2004 does not have lenght of 2000 but it is Comtes baby ;) give this 3-5 years and will shine! Cab also be enjoyed now too. As Comtes always is best paired with another glass of Comtes.
  • 93p
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1 official sellers in 1 countries

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Information

Origin

Reims, Champagne

Grapes

100% Chardonnay

Vintage Quality

Excellent

Value For Money

Good

Investment potential

No Potential

Fake factory

None

Other wines from this producer

Brut La Francaise

Brut Prestige Rosé

Brut Réserve

Brut Réserve FIFA 2014

Collection

Comtes de Champagne Rosé

Comtes de Champagne Rosé Vinothèque

Comtes de Champagne Vinothèque

Cuvée Prestige

Demi-Sec

Future version of Comtes de Champagne

Les Folies de la Marquetterie

Nocturne

Nocturne Rosé

Prelude

Vintage

Inside Information

Consistently great but from time to time simply divine, Taittinger Comtes de Champagne has consecutively been an apt contender for the title of the best champagne on the market. All recent vintages have been successful; the intense 1996 being one of the finest of the vintage, the 1998 possessing classic Comtes elegance and the 1999 demonstrating a more softer side of Comtes. But in 2000 Taittinger and its reputed cellar master Loïc Dupont hit jackpot. This warm, overt vintage produced many heavy and overly ripe champagnes, but in Comtes the richness given by the year is bound to a velvet-smooth texture and a fine, fresh acidity that creates an exiting tension one wishes to marvel time and again.

 


Comtes de Champagne possesses a flawless track record all the way down to its inaugural vintage, 1952. It is reputed to be the first prestige cuvée blanc de blancs, if one does not count the then small mono-cru blanc de blancs Salon. Today it rivals for the title of the best blanc de blancs quite level-headedly with Dom Ruinart, Salon and Charles Heidsieck Blanc des Millenaires.
Why blanc de blancs then? It was already Pierre Taittinger who believed in Chardonnay. Following his instinct, he created the light and elegant Chardonnay-dominant floral and perfumed style as Taittinger’s trademark. Consistent with this vision, the house’s prestige cuvée was to be a 100 percent Chardonnay whose emphasis is on Avize and Mesnil fruit.

 


The wine is produced in a reductionist style in stainless steel vats but since the 1989 vintage a fraction of the wine has been aged in fairly new oak barrels for four months. This gives a boost to the wine’s creamy texture and enhances its hallmark toasty qualities.
After bottling the wines are transported to the ancient Gallo-Roman chalk cellars of Saint-Niçaise to ferment and mature. The St-Niçaise abbey was destroyed in the French Revolution and much later the Taittingers bought the ruins and built their cellars into these monumental historical surroundings. Today, the underground cellar network at St-Niçaise is used entirely for maturing Comtes de Champagne. The rest of production takes place at the modern winery facilities at Rue de la Justice.
Great champagnes are traditionally named after people. Taittinger makes no exception having chosen to honour the region by naming their prestige cuvée Comtes de Champagne – Counts of Champagne. The origins of the Counts of Champagne lie in the 7th century feudal society. Originally, before the 11th century, the Counts of Troyes had had the ruling but during the time of Thibault II the power shifted to the Champagne County whose Count had his residence in Reims. Thibault II was a mighty man ranking only second to the king. However, it was especially during the times of Thibault IV Champagne flourished. He arranged famous 49-day festivities that brought prosperity to the region. The story of the Champagne Counts came to an end finally when the crown and the Champagne County were unites as Louis X rose to power. Taittinger, still owning the historical Comtes de Champagne residence today, named their prestige cuvée to honour this history.


Complex story but complex is the wine, too. The champagne’s smooth, layered character develops over 10 years’ ageing period in the cellars. This, the wine’s attractive 10 g/l dosage and sufficient post-disgorgement rest make Comtes de Champagne such an attractive champagne already upon release.
We toast to congratulate Taittinger. This house that has recently returned back to family hands, has quickly built a strong spirit with Pierre-Emmanuel Taittinger at the helm supported by both of his children Clovis and Vitalie.

By Champagne magazine

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Highlights

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