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Wine Picks December 6, 2008

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Dessert Wine

Grand Marnier Cuvee Grand Marnier Cuvée du Centenaire liqueur d'agrumes, Du Centenaire, France: Vintages Wine Panel: Grand Marnier's 100th anniversary cuvée is a blend of primarily Fine Champagne Cognacs that are aged up to 25 years and the essence of the exotic Caribbean orange, Citrus Bigaradia. Opulent, subtly complex and very polished, expect bright and zesty flavors of candied orange, almond and brown spice notes. My note: Lovely layers of orange spiced marmalade, brown sugar, candied walnuts, nutmeg and vanilla. Drink: 2008-2045. 108704 40% S 750 mL  $129.95 Score: 95/100. December 6, 2008 Favorite Dessert Wine. Full Review

Sparkling Wine

Louis Roederer Non-Vintage Brut Rosé 2003, A.C. Champagne, France: Vintages Wine Panel: The 2003 vintage in Champagne is destined to be legendary. While far from ‘classic’, the very warm, drought-like conditions have made for some fascinating expressions of the world’s best bubblies that are a must-have for Champagne collectors and enthusiasts. The Roederer House is among the elite Champenoise that chose to embrace the unique qualities of this historic vintage. This rosé blends 70% Pinot Noir with 30% Chardonnay. Aged on its lees for four years, this rich and complex Champagne has generous ripe red berry fruit aromas and flavors with floral accents. Dry, full-bodied with a creamy texture, it’s bold Champagne. My note: A full-bodied and complex Champagne with layers of dark cherries and strawberries from the Pinot Noir in the blend as well as violets, nutmeg and toast. A stupendously long finish. Is there anything more festive during the holidays than pink bubbly? Float a raspberry on top. These folks also make the coveted Cristal Champagne. I visited Louis Roederer in chapter three of my book red, White and Drunk All Over to discover the secrets behind top bubblies. I highly recommend a visit if you’re ever in the Champagne region. Drink: 2008-2015. 368415 12% XD 750 mL  $88.95 Score: 97/100. December 6, 2008 Favorite Sparkling Wine. Full Review

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