The Gerard Bertrand Crémant de Limoux Thomas Jefferson Rosé 2017 is a blend of 65% Chardonnay, 20% Chenin Blanc, and 15% Pinot Noir sourced from the Cremant de Limoux AOC section of the Languedoc in southeast France.
Limoux is the birthplace of Bubbly/Sparkling wine the monks from the local Abby started making wine with bubbles in the early 1500s. They were making Bubbly a hundred years before Champagne.
I read a story that may or may not be true, Dom Perignon, a monk from farther north in Champagne was coming back from a trip that took him to what is now known as eastern Spain and on the way back to Champagne stopped in Limoux. And the rest is history.
The Thomas Jefferson reference on the label is from records found at his home, Monticello, showing that the only Bubbly in his wine cellar was Cremant de Limoux. Which exact Bubbly he had on hand is not known, but it was a couple of hundred years ago.
The Gerard Bertrand Crémant de Limoux Thomas Jefferson Rosé 2017 is made with the Traditional Method, the same process used in Champagne. There are some differences, in Champagne the second fermentation needs to last a minimum of 18 months, while Limoux only mandates 9 months.
The Gerard Bertrand Crémant de Limoux Thomas Jefferson Rosé 2017 is a vintage-dated Bubbly. Most French Bubbles on the more value end are non-vintage wines. There is nothing wrong with non-vintage Bubbly, they are used to establish a “House Style”. A wine you can count on vintage after vintage.
Vintage dated Bubbly while being produced with the same methods of the “House Style” Sparkling wine will be different from year to year since conditions in the vineyard vary from year to year. Sparkling wine producers often only produce vintage date Bubbly in yeas where the conditioned in the vineyard will yield special wine.
While this Bubbly does not have a history that dates back to the 1500s or Tom Jefferson, it is produced from vineyards in the same locations and with production methods pioneered in Limoux. In Champagne, they call the Traditional Method the Champagne Method. That is a little misleading, they did not invent the style, but they did perfect it.
This is a Brut Rose’ meaning a not sweet Bubbly and the pink color comes from the 15% Pinot Noir grapes. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes are used extensively in Champagne and Chenin Blanc Bubbly is a personal favorite of mine. The alcohol content is 12.5%.
Gerard Bertrand Crémant de Limoux Thomas Jefferson Rosé 2017 Tasting Notes
The color is slightly orange in the bottle, but in the glass is pink with an apricot tint, there are tiny, very fine bubbles. The nose is citrus, melon, green apple, light spice, crusty bread, and dried strawberry pieces.
The Gerard Bertrand Crémant de Limoux Thomas Jefferson Rosé 2017 has a firm mouthfeel with nice chewy acidity. It starts with tart lemon, grapefruit, cherry, that salty/nutty “on lees” sensation, and a touch of mineralogy. The mid-palate adds a hint of cream, soft raspberry, and yeasty bread.
The acidity will have you reaching for another sip before you know it, this is a glass of Bubbles that you will finish sooner than expected, so but accordingly.
- The Gerard Bertrand Crémant de Limoux Thomas Jefferson Rosé 2017 is a very satisfying glass of Bubbly.
- The one thing you need to remember about French Sparkling wine is that people only spend big bucks on Champagne. It does not matter how good the Bubbly from any other French wine is, if it is not priced affordably it is not going to sell.
- While that is bad news for winemakers in any place other than Champagne, it is good news for wine drinkers because there are bargains to be found.
- If you are looking for tasty, classy Bubbly (should be found for $15 to $20, watch for Holiday sales) the Gerard Bertrand Crémant de Limoux Thomas Jefferson Rosé 2017 will get the job done with style.