In a nutshell: A full and creamy Grand Cru Champagne with a luxuriant feel.
The lowdown: Taittinger's Prélude Brut Grand Crus is a blend of 50% Chardonnay and 50% Pinot Noir from superior, Grand Cru, vineyards where the best quality grapes are grown. It's aged for at least 4 years on its lees which gives it a multitude of peachy and brioche flavours. The result is very fresh and citrus filled at first with rounder, fuller and silkier flavours quickly taking over to give a real complexity. The finish is really long and expressive with orange peel hints showing through.
When to drink: An admirable Grand Cru Brut Champagne with Taittinger's velvety signature. An impressive aperitif, it's also great with seafood and grilled fish.
Taittinger remains one of the few Champagne Houses to remain owned and actively managed by the family named on the label.
Its origins date back to 1734 when the original house was founded by Jacques Fourneaux. The Taittinger link was established in 1931 when Pierre Taittinger, the founder of today's company acquired the House. Pierre had spent much time in the Champagne region when serving in the 1st world war as a young cavalry officer. Stationed at the Château de la Marquetterie, he fell in love with this remarkable property and its vineyards and eventually purchased the company. Today, the Reims based House is headed up by Pierre's grandson, Pierre-Emmanuel Taittinger and his son, Clovis, and daughter, Vitalie, both of whom are actively involved in the day to day running of this thriving family Champagne House.
Taittinger's home is situated above miles of chalk tunnels and cellars. These 4th century UNESCO listed cellars once belonged to the Benedictine monks of the abbey of St Nicaise and are perfect for the slow ageing process required for great Champagne.
The hallmark of the Taittinger Champagnes is the high percentage of Chardonnay used in their winemaking which can be anything from 40% in the Brut Réserve Non Vintage to 100% in the prestigious Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs. This Chardonnay dominance provides for a style of elegance, delicacy and finesse which is recognised worldwide and has earned the House many accolades and awards over the years.