Sparkler from Cognac perfumed with Szechuan peppercorns

A sparkling French wine made with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir and enhanced with an edible perfume made from Damask rose petals and Szechuan peppercorns has been launched, forging a new category in sparkling wine.

Produced by Les 12 de Versailles, the N°1 Spicy Rose is first in a series of limited edition bottle-fermented perfumed sparkling wines.

The sparkler is made from a blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grown in Cognac, and matured for one year before disgorgement. At this point, a perfumed, edible liqueur made from sugar, Iranian Damask rose petals and Szechuan peppercorns, grown in the Versailles King’s Kitchen Garden (Le Potager du Roi) on the outskirts of Paris, is added to the wine, before resting for a further six months.

This perfumed component has been produced in collaboration with perfumers at the ISIPCA (Institut supérieur international du parfum, de la cosmétique et de l’aromatique alimentaire), France’s leading school for post-graduate studies in perfume, cosmetics products and food flavour formulation, based in Versailles.

The aromatic extracts are obtained by various techniques including infusion, maceration and distillation. For example, the rose perfume is extracted from petals using a distillation process, with 1kg of petals yielding approximately 1 litre of rose water worth £100 per litre.

In terms of profile, N°1 Spicy Rose is said to have aromas of fresh rose, citrus and white pepper, with a layer of subtle pepper spice on the palate.

Housed in an electric blue bottle, the perfumed wine will launch at four Planet of the Grapes wine bars in central London from 12 December.

Only 3,000 bottles of limited-edition N°1 Spicy Rose have been produced, with an RRP of £49.99.

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