Cristal was first created by Louis Roederer for Alexander II in 1876.
It’s a family affair.
Cristal remains in the Roederer family to this day. The estate is currently overseen by Frédéric Rouzaud, the seventh generation of the family. This makes Louis Roeder the largest independent and family-owned Champagne house in the world.
Quality over quantity. It’s always vintage.
Cristal is cellar-aged for six years, and then held for another eight months after its dégorgement (the process of removing sediment from the Champagne). The vines used to grow Cristal’s grapes are also old — they must be a minimum of 25 years of age, but some are as old as 60. The older a vine is, the less fruitful it is, which contributes to the rarity of Cristal.
Cristal likes to keep it old school.
In an effort to return to tradition and make the Champagne-making operation as organic as possible, Louis Roederer began farming biodynamically in 2000. Not only did the company halt the usage of pesticides in their vineyards, but it began tilling the land with horses.
Cristal’s commonalities with crystals go beyond its sparkling appearance. Cristal’s bottles used to be made with leaded crystal. “Crystal” in French is “cristal.”
"Time has worked its magic and Cristal 2014 has emerged triumphant. It is ready to be enjoyed in its youth but can also be further cellar aged to allow it to attain the complexity of a magnificent maturity."
A RADIANT CRISTAL
It is a radiant Cristal champagne that is emerging, already quite a charmer yet still with such immense potential ahead of it. Of Domaine Cristal’s 45 historical vineyard plots, only 39 were selected to go into the final blend this year, those in which the grapes reflected the true identity of this unique wine: purity of fruit, remarkable finesse and elegant length.
Cristal owes this loyalty to the soil to its permanence. It is a wine that is rooted in the eternal, that of the seasons, a ripening cycle, a heritage and a quest. The quest for excellence, purity and harmony, to create a wine that vibrates in tune with its terroir and mirrors its qualities. All that remains is for the cellar master to adjust this resonance, to give the wine the most fitting ageing process to allow it to vibrate at the highest level.
THE RADIANCE OF A SUNNY YEAR
2014 was a bright and sunny year in which the fruit and finesse were more radiant than we ever thought possible. This sunny vintage gave us a generous and well-ripened harvest of grapes which allowed us to craft a Cristal that is truer than ever to its identity.
The 2014 vintage has given us a more terroir style of wine than ever before, one in which the purity and excellent drainage properties of the chalk enabled us to mitigate the vagaries of the weather over the year. Gentle, increasingly eco-friendly sustainable growing techniques have resulted in a Cristal 2014 that shows us the ultimate balance between maturity and freshness.
A WINE OF THE SOIL
The Cristal identity is unique, original and truly unlike any other in the history of the fine wines from the Champagne region. It is a wine of the soil, a wine of depth, a wine of the land yet turned to the light, reaching for the heavens that it almost seems to touch. Cristal is a wine of evolution, a wine that continues to reveal itself to us, slowly and gradually as it ages, to unveil a very different side to itself and the true extent of its unique personality.
Every new vintage reveals the unmistakable Cristal character although through a very different prism each time, a kaleidoscope of flavours and textures, a palette of nuances.
With its rich, fleshy character and exceptional maturity, the Cristal 2014 discloses the inherent purity of its aromas with disconcerting ease. The wine’s powerful fruitiness melts into an intense, powdery and saline chalkiness before giving way to a graceful finish. Cristal 2014 now offers itself to us for drinking yet still has great potential for evolution and a long future ahead of it.
The 2014 is a loyal expression of the vintage and a more accurate reflection of the Cristal style than ever. It delights us effortlessly and unapologetically. It is a great Champagne wine with both allure and charm. A perfect Cristal and intensely of the 2014 vintage.