Cristal Champagne was first founded in 1876 by Alexander II of Russia and is observed by many as the first prestigious cuvée. As the political position in Russia at the time of his rule was unbalanced, the Tsar feared murder. He ordered Cristal Champagne Louis Roederer bottles for his Three Emperors Dinner so that he could see the bubbles and also prevent hiding a bomb beneath them, as this could happen with a standard dark green indented bottle. Louis Roederer approved a Flemish glassmaker to produce a clear lead glass Cristal Champagne bottle with a flat bottom. The Champagne is now known as "Cristal".
The Wine was not commercially ready until 1945. In the mid-1990s and early 2000s, the Cristal Champagne brand became more frequently connected with the hip-hop and music culture. Numerous artists referring to the drink in song lyrics and as part of their public image, including 50 Cent, Raekwon, The Notorious B.I.G, A$AP Rocky, Sean Combs, Hollywood Undead, $UICIDEBOY$, Yung Lean, Big L, Mac Miller and Jay-Z. The nickname "Crissy" is sometimes used for the drink. Tupac Shakur invented a cocktail and called it "Thug Passion", which is a blend of Alizé Gold Passion and Cristal Champagne. In a conversation with The Economist in 2006, Louis Roederer the managing director Frederic Rouzaud said he observed the attention from rappers with the "curiosity and serenity." Moreover, asked if he thought the association with rappers would harm the brand, he replied, "that is an excellent question, but what can we do? We cannot forbid people from buying the Cristal Champagne. I am sure Dom Pérignon or Krug Champagne would be thrilled to have their business associated with high rollers and also spreading the word to the world about Cristal Champagne."
2006 was a hot year, characterised by contrasting rainfall patterns. Following on from a surprisingly cold and rainy August, a warm, dry September hastened up the ripening process producing unique, delicious, complex grapes.
55% Pinot Noir 45% Chardonnay 20% wines matured in wood (oak barrels) with weekly being tonnage no malolactic fermentation. Cristal Champagne is a blend of grand crus from the Reims mountain, the Marne Valley and CÃ´te des Blancs. Matured for five years in cellars eight months resting after disgorging.
This lovely, dense, ripe, fresh and long Cristal 2006 is unhesitatingly made using full-bodied, smooth Pinots and clean, elegant mineral Chardonnays. The ripeness of 2006 products makes it possible to achieve a different summit of matter and purity, softness and richness.
Soft, almost frightened bubbles, in a light, slow and constant flow.
There is a rich aroma of lemon, orange, white flowers and lightly roasted nuts. On airing, the imperative fruitiness comes intense, almost explosive: a sabayon of vine peaches, melon, mango and apricots.
In the mouth highlights a rounded, complex ballet of fruit. The texture is amazingly concentrated, giving the hypothesis of biting into a ripe, fleshy fruit. The palate is, surrounded by this depth of juicy, creamy, silky fruit, which soon delivers the way for a pure, sharp, graceful freshness. A shift follows from ripe fruit to a clean, light, delicate setting. Ripeness, softness and concentration arise from freshness and mineral quality, converting the ripe fruit into a somewhat sharp citrus flavour; the warmer tasting notes make way for flowers, citrus zests and nuts. After this rapid sequence of characters, there is a lasting impact of harmony: the aromas, flavours, slight acidity and freshness come in just the right dimensions, blending to form an entirely desegregated yet complex whole. A few reflections of tatin tart and Danish pastries add a final touch to the already complex range of fragrances.