Supplied by Mumm Harbour Bar, Sydney.

Finding the Fizz: Your Guide To The Best French-Exclusive Champagne

The celebratory pop of a champagne bottle is a sound that we all like to hear. Whether you’re toasting to a significant life event, achievement or simply the end of a long day, champagne is the perfect drink choice. While for many years, all sparkling wines or cremants were referred to as champagne, it’s now only the wines produced in the Champagne region of Northern France that hold the title. Imbued with heritage, prestige and elegance, French champagnes are truly the creme de la creme of wines. If you’re looking for a new bottle to try this weekend then here are some of the best French champagnes to try today.

Moët & Chandon

Many would regard Moët and Chandon as one of the best French champagne producers. Known for producing their notoriously expensive Dom Pérignon, the prestigious Maison has been making the world’s best bottles of champagne for over 270 years. With vineyards located across all five areas of the Champagne region, including Montagne de Reims, Côte des Blancs, Vallée de la Marne, Sézanne and Aube, the house has access to an incredible range of grapes and fruits. We recommend starting out with a bottle of the dry Moët Impérial Brut. With a blend of pear, citrus and brioche, the Champagne offers a mature taste best paired with a plate of seafood.

Moët & Chandon Impérial Brut A$64.99 

Perrier-Jouët

Another top French champagne brand is the elegant Perrier-Jouët. Modelling a collection of vintage-inspired designs, Perrier-Jouët champagnes epitomise beauty in both style and taste. The house’s beloved Belle Epoque Cuvée Rosé is one of these examples. Offering a delicately warm and subtle palette, the champagne contains notes of pink grapefruit, mandarin and brioche and pairs well with lobster and fig. With its gorgeous golden salmon-pink tone, this Perrier-Jouët is one to save for a special occasion.

Perrier-Jouët Belle Epoque Rosé A$349.99

Veuve Clicquot

Veuve Clicquot is one of the most famous french champagne brands in the world. We love Maison’s premium vintage, La Grande Dame. Named after the determined early businesswoman Madame Clicquot, who took over the Veuve Clicquot business at only 27 years old in 1805, La Grande Dame is a tribute to strong women. With fresh notes of red apple and full-bodied roundness, the La Grande Dame 2012 is accentuated by a bottle design from the iconic Japanese artist, Yayoi Kusama. Made for colder weather, the La Grande Dame is the perfect winter champagne.

Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame 2012 A$330

Dom Perignon

Dom Pérignon is the most celebrated brand of vintage —vintages are produced using the best grapes grown in a single year— Champagne in the world. Dom Pérignon is the Champagne of choice for royalty and celebrities alike. Memorably, Dom Pérignon was the Champagne of choice for the royal wedding of Lady Diana to Prince Charles. This is the perfect bottle to enjoy for a special moment.

Dom Perignon P2 Vintage 2002 $453.00

Laurent Perrier

Founded in 1812, Laurent-Perrier is one of Champagne’s most famous houses and synonymous with an art de vivre à la française. With its smart and sleek design and it’s signature Chardonnay-dominant house style, Maison Laurent-Perrier is known for its finesse, lightness, and elegance. A “healthy” sparkler— kind of. A low-calorie Champagne brand, Laurent-Perrier is a fashion A-listers’ favourite.

Laurent Perrier Brut Natural $139.00

Louis Roederer

With over 200 hectares of Premier and Grand Cru vineyards, Louis Roederer’s plot-by-plot approach to vine cultivation enables the house to produce incredibly mature and diverse grapes. The Louis Roederer Brut Premier is the perfect example of the house’s uniquely balanced and complex blends. Maturing over a four year period, the result is a blend with fine bubbles, subtle spiced notes, elegant fruitiness and a flattering structure.

Louis Roederer Cristal Brut 2012 $399.00

Pol Roger

If you want to celebrate like a royal, Pol Roger it is. Pol Roger holds a Royal Warrant as Champagne supplier to Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth II and was the official Champagne of William and Kate’s wedding as well as Harry and Meghan’s. Pol Roger is also renowned for having been a favourite of Sir Winston Churchill — whose famous words about Champagne (“In victory, deserve it. In defeat, need it!”) are quoted on the label of the prestige Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill.

Pol Roger Brut Reserve $ 76.99

Bollinger

Bollinger is one of the last independent and family-owned champagne houses in France. Having started producing the wine in 1829, Bollinger makes some of the most exceptional champagne blends in the world. One of our favourite blends is the Bollinger R.D. 2007, which offers a warm mix of vintage and freshness, with notes of mirabelle plum, dried apricot and light hazelnut. Pairing well with saffron, Bollinger recommends pairing the R.D. 2007 with a langoustine with a saffron-infused vinaigrette, fillet of halibut in a saffron crust or a Bresse chicken with a saffron and ginger sauce.

Bollinger R.D. 2007 Cuvée A$440.00

G.H. Mumm

Established in Reims in 1827, the Champagne house G.H. Mumm and its iconic red ribbon are considered by many to be the quintessential gastronomy Champagne, found at the tables of the finest chefs. Blended from a palette of 120 crus, Mumm Cordon Rouge expresses the rich diversity of Champagne’s terroirs, always in the fresh, vibrant style that is the signature of Pinot Noir, the House’s emblematic grape. 

G.H. Mumm Cordon Rouge $75.00

Krug

Appreciated for delivering notoriously expensive bottles of champagne, Krug has been producing exceptional champagne since 1843. We recommend going for a bottle of the indulgent Krug Grande Cuvée. The blend is known for its unique balance of both delicate and hearty elements, with a mix of toast, dried fruit and hazelnut notes. While its A$329.00 price tag isn’t cheap, a glass of this elegant champagne will convince you that you have made the right decision.

Krug Grande Cuvée A$329.99

For more inspiration on champagne, you will enjoy our coverage of Why Dom Perignon Remains at the Top of the Champagne Chain, Clink Clink: A Toast to the Best Drops From Moët & Chandon and Non-alcoholic Champagne Alternatives to Try this Dry July.

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