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Pol Roger is perhaps best known as Winston Churchill's favourite Champagne. The house remains family-owned and has a reputation for producing champagnes of finesse and elegance which age very well. Pol Roger Brut Rèserve Non-Vintage, made from equal parts of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, is consistently one of the very best on the market, largely due to the high proportion of aged reserve wines in the blend. Pol Roger vintage wines, made from at least 60% Pinot Noir and up to 40% Chardonnay, are soft and fruit-driven in youth but, after ten years or so, develop great complexity and finesse. The Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill, launched in 1984 and made from a secret blend, is a Champagne of exquisite finesse and balance and one that rivals the very best of the region.
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Pol Roger Brut NV has a truly wide appeal and is perfect for lovers of exuberantly-styled Champagnes. Feminine and fruity in its youth, it takes on a fuller flavour with age. Made from 33% Chardonnay, 34% Pinot Noir and 33% Pinot Meunier with the added reserve wines especially selected to achieve the requisite elegance, balance and harmony. It’s perfect for the cellar as well as current drinking, which is an excellent reason to buy more than one case!
Case price (12)
Case saving £48.00
Bottle 12 x 75cl
A facsimile of the Pol Roger Brut, with the same triptych of varietals in equal measures and sourced from the same vineyards, the Rich differs in that it has a residual sugar level of 34 g/l ( as opposed to 8-11 g/l) and is therefore an excellent match for puddings and the like. The delightful honied profile is perfectly matched by fine balanced acidity, which leaves the palate cleansed and satisfied in equal measure! (Simon Field MW, BBR Buyer)
Low or Zero Dosage Champagnes are very modish at the moment, but can be extremely difficult to get right, the region’s historical infatuation with sugar being as a result of climatic obligation rather than any whimsical pursuit of pleasure. So to make a wine with no sugar and to entitle it Pure,is courageous indeed. Pol Roger, it should come as no great surprise to learn, have risen to their own challenge, and have done so with considerable aplomb. The key seems to be to stick with the winning formula, in terms of grape varieties, namely a third each of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, but to select from specific (perhaps warmer) vineyards and to age for a little longer thereby engendering a natural softening. Spicy, with notes of crushed apple, broiche and peach stones, this is a very successful wine, suitably cerebral, one must surmise, to accompany any lively debate over a plate of 12 (or even possibly) 18 Fine de Claire Oysters.
Case price (12)
Case saving £57.60
A burnished gold colour and persistent mousse are the initial impressions from this new release from one of my favourite Champagne houses. A delightful nose of fresh baking bread, honey, candied apples and straw make for a delightful bouquet. The palate is just as intriguing with oodles of ripe autumnal fruit, honeyed tones and hints of salinity which are all kept in check by crisp acidity. Long and delightful on the finish, another great vintage Pol to add to their long list of great vintage wines. Hard to resist now, but another year or two may bring the complex, disparate notes into complete harmony. Chris Pollington - Private Account Manager This is a vintage Pol Roger which is immediately very, very likeable, positively luxurious in its weight and complexity. On the nose it is showing layers of character, soft peach and ripe, almost autumnal apples with a frame of fresh honeycomb. The palate is no different, the weight of fruit in the mid-palate means that this could even be enjoyed once it has been shipped, the white pear, crisp apple and spicy white pepper tapers to a taut close with the finishing acidity is simply trademark Pol Roger. Gary Owen - Private Account Manager
Bottle 6 x 75cl
Unquestionably Cuvee Winston Churchill. Rich, complex with hints of toasted almonds and that wonderful honey character that you always get with this remarkable wine. Perfectly balanced citrus acidity breaks down the full bodied, buttery biscuit palate leaving you with a smooth and elegant finish that just goes on and on. What a way to start the day, more please. Ben Upjohn – Fine Wine Sales Manager I always look forward to tasting the new release of Winston Churchill, it is the ultimate expression of what the Pol Roger House can achieve. The 2004 did not disappoint and was very much typical of the Pol style. The palate is packed full of citrus, stone fruit and fresh flowers then a roasted nut and toasted brioche hint on the finish. There is a lot of substance there but all the while very approachable and extremely refreshing. I was particularly impressed with how vibrant and truly drinkable this is already, but with so much potential for the future. This is really very good. Laura Godwin - Private Account Manager
Assrt x 6
Assrt x 6 1 x 450cl
Cuve Sir Winston Churchill is only made in the finest vintage years and the just released 1996 shows all the hallmarks of this great vintage. It comes as a surprise to learn that there is nearly 80% Pinot Noir in this blend, such is its extreme elegance. A totally beguiling nose of hazelnuts precedes a gloriously textured mouth-feel. It is drinking superbly now, but given time it will only improve. A wonderful wine and a true classic.
It should come as no surprise that Pol Roger have delayed the release of their 2002 Vintage Champagne until 2012, in defiance of all commercial logic and the dictates of cash-flow. The reason is simple; 2002 is the best vintage in Champagne since 1990, a vintage which has not been equalled since and a vintage where the rewards of patience are and will continue to be very fine indeed. The wine was aged for nine years in Pol Roger’s famously deep cellars, kept at a constant 9 degrees, the perfect natural ambiance for gentle autolytic ageing and the nurturing of an exemplary equilibrium and a very fine and persistent mousse. And as with all great things, fools rush in and the winemakers at Pol Roger, needless to say, are far from foolish. Indeed Cellar master Dominique Petit, formerly of Krug, is regarded as one of the greatest winemakers in the region and he knew from the out-set that the wine would need an unusually long cellaring before release. This, to borrow a phrase from another friend of Pol Roger, is his finest hour, thus far… The blend is a traditional one of 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay; after the double-débourbage (cold-settling) the first fermentation is in stainless steel, kept relatively cool. A full malolactic fermentation ensues, followed by the second fermentation in bottle and then the lengthy slumber beneath Avenue de Champagne in Epernay. The bottles are hand – tuned by remueurs, the prestidigitatory efforts of whom ensure the completion of yeast autolysis and ensure a blameless richness and length on the palate. Simon Field MW, Wine Buyer - June 2013
Magnum 3 x 150cl
Jeroboam 1 x 300cl
Initially quite restrained on the nose, the bouquet unfurls to reveal white flowers, stone and citrus fruit and a hint of brioche. He palate has a nervy tension and salinity that is the mark of this great cuvee. Give it a couple of years in the cellar to fill out its broad frame.
Following the fabulous 2002 was never going to be an easy task but the team at Pol Roger have pulled it off with aplomb. Citrus, white flowers and brioche vie for attention on the nose. There is a fine, taut power on the palate, broader and more generous than recent vintages and full of gingerbread, ripe stone fruit and red apple, held together by a filigree thread of acidity. This is delicious now, but will reward a year or so in the cellar and drink well for at least a further decade. Reminiscent of the superb (and underrated), 1998. A must for all Champagne fans. Fergus Stewart, Private Account Manager Pol Roger is a Champagne house known for their stylish, elegant wines with fabulous age-ability. Tom Stevenson, arguably the world’s greatest Champagne critic, once said "If I were to choose just one house from which to source a vintage Champagne to lay down, there is no question that I would choose Pol Roger." The last two vintages, 2002 and 2004, are both exceptional years for Champagne. Similar to the twin vintages of 2009 and 2010 in Bordeaux, 2002 and 2004 Champagnes are of similar quality but of different styles. 2002 is focussed on structure, elegance and precision. 2004 is a vintage “on steroids”, boosted by sunshine, they are rich and concentrated, yet balanced by a backbone of acidity that will allow these to age for a long time. Chris Pollington, Private Account Manager The wine displays a very attractive pale straw colour. The nose is mineral and elegant with complex aromas of white flowers, quince and subtle brioche overtones. On the palate the wine is intense yet retains a sense of delicacy with balanced notes of stone fruit, acacia honey and citrus underpinned by a fine thread of acidity. Excellent freshness and persistence, with ample concentration and richness to develop over the next 3-7 years. Winemaker’s notes
The Pol Roger Rosé is often mooted by the critics as one of the best on the market. Pol Roger does not make a Non-Vintage Rosé, preferring to release only in vintage years. The 2006 Brut Rose Vintage is produced from a blend of 50% Pinot Noir and 35% Chardonnay drawn from some 20 Premiers and Grands crus on the Montagne de Reims and the Côte des Blancs. In order to obtain its delicate colour and subtle nose 15% Pinot Noir, from selected vineyards in Bouzy, Ambonnay and Cumieres, is vinified “en rouge” and added to the blend prior to the second fermentation. Wonderfully salmon pink hue, with lots of fresh red berries on the nose, this is a fine rose from Pol Roger. Creamy and textured on the palate, this would be a brilliant match with a raspberry soufflé or summer pudding. Fergus Stewart, Private Account Manager Fresh wild strawberries, whipped vanilla cream and caramelised pastry – no this isn’t a delicious pudding, but a regal rose Champagne from the infamous Pol Roger. A lovely rusty pink colour in the glass with spicy peppercorns, summer blossom and fresh herbs. The 2006 grips to your taste buds with layer upon layer of red summer berries. This has all of the finesse I would expect, with a persistent and long finish. Laura Atkinson, Private Account Manager
Bottle 1 x 75cl
It may be a cliché but this has all the hallmarks I look for in a great Blanc de Blancs; white flowers, citrus, a touch of stone fruit and the merest hint of honey. A sure sign that Pol Roger have delivered yet again when nature has presented ideal conditions for vintage Champagne. Citrus dominates the palate at the moment, with buttery brioche and almonds in the background. Very fresh and beautifully balanced, this will certainly provide immediate gratification but I’d recommend a couple of years cellaring to add a layer of honeyed complexity to this excellent wine. A real treat for Champagne lovers. Fergus Stewart, Private Account Manager. With vibrant citrus scents on the nose, then green apple, lemon pith, verbena and white peach, this is a glassful indeed. There is a blossom perfume and salted almond character that balances the fruit intensity just beautifully. The palate is more of the same, with a wealth of lemon, lime and green apple flavours plus white blossom, plump stone fruit and mouth-watering acidity. The 2008 is a really special vintage. Although simply gorgeous now, this is certainly a keeper. Laura Atkinson, Private Account Manager
The Pol Roger Chardonnay is a fitting celebration of a great vintage from a superlative House. The high natural sugar levels of this near perfect vintage gave the base wine an average alcohol level of 10.5 degrees, but this was matched by fine natural acidity. Ideal in other words. The resulting Champagne, after a suitable slumber on its yeast, marries the youthful Chardonnay exuberance that one has come to associate with this cuvée with the gravitas of the vintage. Stone fruit notes, allied to brioche, iodine and honey all underwrite latent excellence. Simon Field MW, BBR Buyer
As with the classic vintage Pol Roger, their vintage Blanc de Blancs offers exceptional quality at an attractive price. This 2004 is forward in style and will show very well from release through until 2018; notes of white flowers, citrus and stone fruit with delicate honey and brioche characters in the background. Fresh and vibrant, it is beautifully balanced with fine acidity, and offers an long, attractive crystalline finish. Very classy indeed. Martyn Rolph, Private Account Manager