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Moët & Chandon

Collection Impériale Création n°1

In mid-October, SommelierS International had the privilege of discovering the new cuvée from Moët & Chandon. Named Collection Impériale Création n°1, this special cuvée celebrates the 280th anniversary of the House, founded in 1743 by Claude Moët.

This Brut Nature, inspired by the Esprit du Siècle cuvée, paying homage to the wines of the 20th century, embodies the art of blending and ageing, mastered to perfection by Benoît Gouez, the cellar master.

Beyond the blending of 7 vintages, Collection Impériale Création n°1 offers a blend of different maturation processes (stainless steel, oak casks, and even bottle ageing on lees). This thoughtful approach firmly establishes Maison Moët & Chandon in the realm of High Oenology, with handcrafted packaging and a limited production of 65,000 bottles.

The cuvée Collection Impériale Création n°1 brings together 5 reserve vintages aged in wood: the 2012, which contributes balance, the rich 2010, the tension-filled 2008, the powerful 2006, and the elusive but essential 2000 vintage. These vintages are complemented by the 2013, providing fruit and freshness, and the 2004 with its toasty and smoky character.The result is a nose with mineral and spicy notes (liquorice, vanilla), toasted nuances, coffee, and hazelnut. This is followed by flavors of candied lemon, mirabelle, and fig. On the palate, the bubbles are fine and delicate, offering a pleasant hint of bitterness. The finish, with smoky and liquorice notes, confirms a cuvée characterized by freshness and maturity.



© G. Sgura

To unite the art and the art of winemaking, Moët & Chandon collaborated with artist Daniel Arsham to present his vision of this new cuvée through a monumental, sculptural, and mural artwork, encapsulating the heritage of the House. The artist also designed 70 limited-edition bottles with three-dimensional capsules that will serve as special pieces in the Collection.

This cuvée is also elevated by Chef Jean-Michel Bardet during a food and champagne pairing dinner at Château de Saran. A meal where the chef skillfully combines textures, chromaticity, and salinity with the bubbles of this exceptional cuvée.

Through 3 evolving bites featuring mushrooms, laurel, then vanilla-miso, we reminisce about the different ageing processes present in the cuvée, especially the miso recalling umami and the vanilla the wood ageing. For the starter, the marine risotto and smoked langoustine, combined with combava and nutmeg, echo the maritime character of the champagne, thanks to the seaweed, and its smoky aspect with the langoustine smoked over hay.

For the main course, the chawanmushi (a poulette cooked in a bread bun) with poultry jus enhanced with a touch of cumin, and sourdough bread, elevate the smoky notes of the champagne. After a decanting process that reveals even more aromas, we enjoy the cuvée with a poulette from the Cour d'Armoise, lacto-fermented kumquat, and stuffed eggplant. The cuvée concludes its presentation beautifully with Tommes de Bethmale, Thérondels, and Tomme des Bauges cheeses, just as we do, wrapping up the evening at the Château's bar, where the lounge atmosphere reminds us that we have experienced an unforgettable evening, much like Collection Impériale Création n°1, which marks the beginning of a countdown to the 300th anniversary of the House.

Sandy Bénard-Ravoisier