Happy birthday to Her Maj! Today is The Queen’s 91st birthday. But which Champagne should one toast many happy returns with?
Only very particular fizzes get past the palace gates. In order to supply HM The Queen, you have to hold a royal warrant and currently there are nine Champagne houses that have that privilege.
Of the nine, only one – Laurent-Perrier – is officially ‘by appointment to HRH The Prince of Wales’, just in case you were wondering which corks might be popping in Highgrove or Clarence House.
What they are drinking over at Kensington Palace is harder to pin down, though when it came to wedding celebrations, Pol Roger Brut Réserve in magnums was, it seems, Prince William’s choice.
If we had to pick a tipple from the list for Harry, it would probably be Krug or Bollinger; he’s bound to have sampled the latter in the Bolly tent at Twickenham.
Of course, if they all want to please their mum and grandmother, it would have to be Mumm.
Here are our favourite cuvées from the nine royal warrant-holding houses:
Bollinger: The most appropriate cuvée is clearly La Grande Année, and the rosé 2005 vintage will no doubt match the Queen’s outfit today. £94, tanners-wines.co.uk
GH Mumm & Cie: If you can find a bottle, the new Blanc de Blancs RSRV from 2012, takes Mumm quality to a new level.
Krug: Has to be the house’s flagship Grande Cuvée, now on 163ème Édition, and based on the 2007 harvest, so plenty of age here too. £129.99, Waitrose
Lanson: First released last year, the inaugural 2006 vintage of Clos Lanson, made from a one hectare vineyard in the centre of Reims, has just the right amount of gravitas. £164.95, thefinestbubble.com
Laurent-Perrier: While we hear Charles and Camilla have a fondness for LP rosé, perhaps such an occasion warrants the extra finesse and complexity of multi-vintage Grand Siècle. £95, laithwaites.co.uk
Louis Roederer: Brut Premier in magnum gets extra ageing compared to in the bottle, and it’s always a noticeable step up in complexity and intensity. £74, tanners-wines.co.uk
Moët & Chandon: Having tasted it again earlier this month, the multi-layered MCIII is befittingly regal as it gradually evolves. £395, champagnedirect.co.uk
Pol Roger: Blanc de Blancs vintage is the hidden star of this house and the 2008 is a stellar vintage. £80, bbr.com
Veuve Clicquot: If you can’t get hold of the new Extra Brut Extra Old release, you’ll have to make do with winemaker Dominque Demarville’s first solo vintage, the explosive 2008. £45, Tesco
This article was published 21 April 2017