Veuve Clicquot have submerged a selection of its Champagnes 40 meters into the Baltic Sea. The Champagnes were lowered into the water close to the Åland shipwreck discovery almost exactly four years ago, where a stash of 47 bottles of Veuve Clicquot from 1839 and 1841 were recovered.
Four years ago 46 bottles of Veuve Clicquot Champagne were discovered at the bottom of the Baltic Sea near the Åland archipelago which lies between Sweden and Finland. Experts believed the Champagne had been shipwrecked in the 1840s en route to Russia and spent more than 165 years underwater.
According to the the cellarmaster of Veuve Clicquot, Dominique Demarville a tasting of the more than century-old Champagne showed an astonishing freshness and inspired the House to embark on the program.
Veuve Clicquot has named the underwater Champagne cellar the Åland Vault, and filled it with non-vintage Yellow Label (in 75cl and magnum bottles), Vintage Rosé 2004 and demi-sec wines.
Demarville said about their underground cellar, “the Baltic Sea is a cool dark sea with a temperature around 39°F (4˚C). There is very little current so the pressure remains constant and it is significantly less salty than other seas. These conditions allow us to measure the impact of the absence of oxygen on the aging process in a stable environment.” The Reims cellars are at a constant 52°F (11˚C).
Veuve Clicquot plans to retrieve some wines from the sea on a regular basis and conduct comparative tastings with the duplicate bottles from the cellars in Reims in the presence of a panel of professional tasters.