This year's Decanter World Wine Awards International Trophy for the Best in Show Sparkling over £15 went to Charles Heidsieck, Blanc des Millénaires Brut, Champagne, France 1995 (12%)
- Albet i Noya, Barrica 21 Brut, Penedès, Spain 2007
- Bollinger, La Grande Année Brut, Champagne, France 2004
- Chanoir-Fresne, Brut Blanc de Blancs, Champagne, France NV
- Jackson- Triggs, Entourage Grand Reserve, Brut, Okanagan Valley, Canada 2010
- Rovellats, Masia Segle XV Gran Reserva Brut Nature, Cava, Spain 2005
- Smithbrook, Yilgarn Blanc de Blancs, Pemberton, Western Australia 2010
- Sugrue Pierre, Brut, West Sussex, United Kingdom 2011
- Vigne Matte, Extra Dry, Prosecco di Conegliano Valdobbiadene Superiore, Italy 2013
Repeating its success last year in the same category, this is a wine that consistently displays its impeccable breeding. Despite it being a fiercely contested final, featuring a raft of fabulous wines from all over the world, this was a clear winner that stood out from the very start, with its excellent complexity, length, harmonious texture and impeccable balance.
Few individual wines in the DWWA have received such an emphatic stamp of approval as Blanc des Millénaires 1995. Winning the International Trophy in 2013, 2011 and 2007, its hallmark is sumptuous, creamy Chardonnay of great finesse and no shortage of power.
Director of Charles Heidsieck, Stephen Leroux says the aim with this wine is to produce ‘the purest, most elegant, matured grand cru Chardonnay in Champagne’. There can surely be few other such worthy contenders for that crown, with the handful of other comparably fine blanc de blancs released onto the market years ahead of their peak drinkability. Blanc des Millénaires was first produced at the instigation of the late chef de cave Daniel Thibault in 1983, and is based on four grand crus and one premier cru from the chalky soils of Côte des Blancs (the current chef de cave, with 25 years of service, is Thierry Rosset).
Although precise figures aren’t disclosed, a few thousand cases of this Trophy-winner are released every four or five years; they are kept in the 2,000-year-old, 30-metre deep cellars on their lees for about 10 to 20 years prior to disgorgement.
Written by Decanter