The best Champagnes to pop open this summer

By Tempus | 15 Jun 2022 | Indulge

Skip the Cava and the Prosecco and go for the real stuff this summer with one of these iconic Maisons

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It's June, and it goes without saying that popping open a bottle of Champagne should be at the top of your to-do list this summer. After all, what's a day in the sun without the most iconic summer drink of all time?

Here, Tempus has scoured the market to find the best Champagnes for celebrating with friends and relatives this year.

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Billecart-Salmon, Brut Rosé

A classic among classics, Billecart-Salmon has long been considered one of the finest non-vintage pink champagnes on the market, while still remaining accessible to both conoisseurs and beginners alike.

The Brut Rosé is a blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir vinified as red wine. These give it a delectable, light and elegant flavour, followed by a fresh finish with a taste of raspberry.

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Champagne Taittinger Brut Réserve NV

Taittinger Brut Réserve, one of the most iconic names in the world of Champagne, is a classic Brut made from 40% Chardonnay, 35% Pinot Noir and 25% Pinot Meunier. 

The wine uses perfectly matured grapes harvested from over 35 different vineyards across the region, resulting in a gorgeously crisp and well-balanced wine that is perfect for a summery treat.

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Bollinger PN VZ16

The second wine to be released as part of the Bollinger PN series, the Bollinger PN VZ16 is a 100% Pinot Noir focused blend with the majority of the fruit coming from Grand Cru vineyards in Verzenay. Famed for its Pinot Noir, there is no surprise that Bollinger’s signature rich, open style shines through and this is a wonderful example of the ‘Burgundy-vinosity’ character of the House.

The generous fruit of this wine is combined with mouth-watering vivacity and releases exotic flavours in the mouth, with brioche and hints of stewed fruit. It ends with a wonderfully lively and saline finish.

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Champagne AYALA Le Blanc de Blancs 2014

Le Blanc de Blancs is produced in small quantities in exceptional years only and fully expresses the superb calibre of great Chardonnay from the best crus of the Côte des Blancs. The nose is delicate, but still very expressive with wonderful aromatic freshness with notes of orange blossom, yuzu zest and white peaches accompanied by a subtle infusion of fresh anis and lime blossom with a hint of ginger.

Right from the start, this wine is fresh and lively and it shows a dazzling youthful character, followed by a broad and appetising palate of white fruit and acacia honey with subtle pastry and brioche overtones. 

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Soutiran Alexandre

Produced from grapes grown in Premier Cru vineyards, this lesser-known offering is a one-of-a-kind bottle from Soutiran, a family-owned Maison based in the village of Ambonnay.

Just 60,000 bottles per year are produced, and are aged between five and eight years, leaving drinkers with a deliciously fruity, floral taste that will get them in the summer spirit.

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Frerejean Frères Blanc de Blancs Premier Cru

Described as the "rebel Maison of Champagne", Frerejean Frères is a superb and aesthetically stunning wine that comes from the terroir of the Côte des Blancs in the department of Marne.

The wine then matures in the Maison's cellars for between six and 12 years to produce a beautifully clear and gentle champagne, offering an elevated accompaniment to sunny celebrations.

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Maison Bruno Paillard Première Cuvée Extra-Brut

40 years on since Maison Bruno Paillard was founded, its Première Cuvée Extra Brut remains the flagship of its prestigious portfolio. A multi-vintage Champagne, the Première Cuvée Extra Brut is a superb interpretation of the region.

The vineyards, which are managed sustainably using organic and biodynamic principles, are a particular focus at Maison Bruno Paillard, which now farms almost 70% of the vineyards needed for production.

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Fortnum's Brut Réserve Champagne

Fortnum and Mason, the iconic luxury store based in London, is offering a superb Brut Réserve that is not only a spectacular wine, but quite a status symbol too. 

The wine is a blend of the three classic grape varieties, Pinot Meunier, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, the first two giving the Champagne a considerable depth and complexity.

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Adnams Champagne Brut

This is a classy and elegant golden Champagne made using 80% Pinot Meunier and 20% Chardonnay, giving off a delightful scents of dried flowers and fresh fruit.

Despite Adnam's historic connection to Suffolk, the vineyards that produce the grapes for this Champagne are located in and around the beautiful village of Vincelles. Pinot Meunier gives the wine a significant depth and maturiy, while the Chardonnay brings structure.

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Laurent Perrier Magnum Cuvee Rose Brut

Laurent-Perrier’s Cuvée Rosé derives from 100% Pinot Noir, with the profile of the Champagne extracted from the colours and flavours of the grape skins to bring an added depth of freshness and elegance, revered by wine-lovers around the world.

Providing enchanting notes and intense red fruit aromas with every enticing sip, Laurent-Perrier’s Cuvée Rosé pairs extremely well with red meat and game, so get that barbecue fired up!