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by Fred McMillin
Le Reve ("reve" is "dream" in French) 1992 and 1993 vintages were rated "the best American sparkling wine" by the Beverage Testing Institute of the U.S.A.
Whence Le Reve? Let's go back to 1734 in the Champagne district of France.
Birth of the Bubbles
1734—Champagne was noted for its fine still white wines, chiefly from the Chardonnay grape. Critics were not impressed by the trendy addition of bubbles. "Since you requested it, I'm sending you this early-bottled sparkling wine, though it is of little worth, and belongs to beer..." wrote a leading Epernay merchant. His customer, Marechal de Montesquiou d'Artagnan, replied, "I see now how wrong I was to ask you to bottle my wine so it would be sparkling. I promise you that in the future I shall not mention it again."
In spite of the bad press, one Jacques Fourneaux founded what is today the third oldest Champagne house.
1932—Pierre Taittinger from Alsace buys the Fourneaux operation, with its fantastic ancient stone cellars that have been active for two centuries. Great grapes and exquisite winemaking brought Taittinger to the esteemed Grande Marque level. The flagship wine was a Blanc de Blancs Comptes de Champagne, first vintage, 1952.
1960—Five years before Pierre's death, his son Claude became director of the firm. In time, he must of had a dream. He would bring Taittinger to America...build a magnificent chateau similar to their own Chateau de la Marguetterie...create a magnificent flagship Blanc de Blancs similar to their Comptes de Champagne,and name it Le Reve, a dream that came true. In fact, it is our...
Wine of the Day
Claude Taittinger had little trouble getting his own way as he created Domaine Carneros. You see, he's a JUDO BLACK BELT (i.e., he holds a black belt in Judo.)
This page created September 2000