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(Champagne pronunciation: Sham-pein)

Champagne is a historic wine region in France. Only sparkling wines produced in this region may properly be called or marketed "Champagne". Wine from Champagne dates back to Roman times, they planted the grapes and drank the wine. King Henry the Fourth during the 16th century was the first to designated "Vins de Champagne" or "Champagne Wines" an official wine region.

The winegrowers realized that these "grey wines" matured poorly in casks, so the idea of bottling wine came about. It was affirmed in 1821 Dom Pérignon invented the method of creating sparkling wine during his tenure as a monk at "Abbaye (Abbey) bénédictine d'Hauvillers".

He discovered that the Grey wines became naturally sparkling, especially if it had a light color, a low alcohol content, and if it was bottled at the time of the spring equinox. Most champagne are sold as Non-Vintage which are a blend from several vintages and several vineyard sites. "Brut" and "Extra Brut" are the most popular types of Champagne and also the driest. Sec, Demi-Sec and doux are each slightly sweeter wines "le Champagne Brut" (extra-dry) was created in 1876 by the demand of the British who, unlike the French at that time, preferred to drink dry wines.

At Gold Medal Wine Club we feature a special Champagne for our members once a year for the Holidays. Every selection is an exclusive import and a perfect way to celebrate the New Year. One of recent selections was the 95 Point Le Brun de Nueville 2006 Brut Champagne. Le Brun received "Champagne Producer of the Year Award" presented by International Wine & Spirit Competition for 2015. This is a fabulous Champagne.