No other drink on Earth can capture the romance and euphoria of a single moment of celebration into such a tangible act as when the seal of a bottle of champagne is broken. The cork pops, the bubbles fizz and the wine bursts out of the bottle with the enthusiasm of lava erupting from Krakatoa. Like all good wines, champagne possesses the depth, character and prestige to command a special place on the dinner tables of many royals, celebrities and businessmen in the uppermost echelons of society. Because of its unparalleled position in the global wine market, this list focuses exclusively on sparkling wines from the Champagne region of France, there are no Cavas, Sekts or Spumantes to be seen here. Oh – and happy New Year! Hopefully you are able to enjoy some delicious champagne while reading this New Year’s list.
10. Pol Roger Sir Winston Churchill
9. Moët & Chandon Dom Perignon White Gold
8. Krug Clos d’Ambonnay
7. Perrier-Jouët Belle Epoque
6. 1928 Krug
5. Louis Roederer, 1990 Cristal Brut
4. Hiedsieck 1907 Diamant Bleu cuvée
3. Ca. 1820 Juglar cuvée
2. 1825 Perrier-Jouët
1. 1893 Veuve Clicquot
In July of 2008, while hiring a locksmith to cut a key and open an antique piece of furniture in the Scottish residence of Torosay Castle, owner Chris James discovered a treasure chest of alcoholic delights. The crown jewel of this discovery was a bottle of 1893 Veuve Clicquot in near perfect condition, including the famous hallmark yellow label. After also finding a bottle of claret, brandy and a port decanter, it became fairly obvious that the aged sideboard was a personal drinks cabinet that had been locked since the late 19th Century. Upon contacting the Grand Marque Champagne house directly, Mr. James was informed it was the only known such bottle in existence. It is considered by many to be priceless and is now on display at the Veuve Clicquot visitor centre in Reims, France. Ultimately, champagne is all about exclusivity, and by that measure as there is only one example in existence, this bottle of 1893 Veuve Clicquot is the most exclusive champagne in the world.