Whether you’ve personally popped a bottle or not, it’s highly likely you’ve heard of the ubiquitous Dom Pérignon. But how much do you really know about the most luxurious champagne? Here we breakdown five interesting facts about Dom.
- Dispelling the Myth
Adding sugar to a wine to initiate a second fermentation was documented six years before Dom Pérignon even entered the abbey at Hautvillers. Pérignon did, however, make several important innovations in Champagne production, such as developing the technique used to make white wine from red grapes and blending grapes to make a superior wine.
- Not Quite Grand Cru
In Champagne, only certain vineyards are classified as Grand Cru, and a Champagne must only be made from these vineyards in order to qualify as a Grand Cru Champagne. Dom Pérignon is made with many grapes from Grand Cru vineyards, but each blend always includes grapes from the original plot in the Abbey of Hautvillers, which is classified as Premier Cru fruit.
- All Vintage, All the Time
Each bottling of Dom Pérignon contains grapes only from a single year, showcasing that vintage’s unique characteristics. Dom Pérignon does not produce a non-vintage wine.
- A Winning Blend
While the percentages change from vintage to vintage, the wine is always based on two key grapes, pinot noir and chardonnay. The percentage is usually somewhere between 50/50 and 60/40 favouring one of the grapes.
- Ageing like a Fine…Champagne (for a minimum of 7 years)
Dom Pérignon releases each vintage three times. The first release is typically around nine years, the second around 18, and the third around 25. This time aging on lees gives the wine complexity and richness. Most bottles of Dom Pérignon are first-release bottles, but if a bottle has “P2” or “P3” on the foil, you’ll know that it’s a second or third release, respectively.