I rarely find the disgorgement date on a bottle and even then it is fleeting in that it may be on the glass, the back label, the neck label or on the cork. Where do you discover this and if not on the bottle, where does one access this info for any one Champagne?
It is highly specific to specific producers and bottles and come sometimes be divined based on lot codes. Search for posts by Brad Baker on the subject.
Eric, Brad is my mentor on all things bubbly and I have gleaned info from him on this subject in the past. I still find it is difficult to locate the disgorgement date in most instances and am looking for some input that may simplify my quest. It seems like each house should publish that info and it should be available on line. If there are more than one disgorgement date, then the question is, which disgorgement am I looking at with this specific bottle? I appreciate the 95
Dom Oeno shows it clearly on the label and there is a discernible difference in the 05 and 06` disgorgements which is one of the reasons for my interest…
Brad’s newsletter actually has a section each issue that delves into this. He describes for each producer (1 per issue) where to find disgorgement information on the bottle.
There is also sometimes a code stamped on the label (somewhere, often on the neck) which may indicate at least which year it was disgorgorged. I have been known to email him the code and producer/wine and he will shoot back his best guess.
That’s the current ‘system’ - no website that I know about. Sure would be nice, though!
Many thanks for your reply. I just joined Champagne Warrior, have read a few back issues and did see some input re disgorgement dates, but did not recognize it is done in each issue. I`ve already bugged him with a lot of questions and hesitate to over do it. This guy is amazing and must have a life beyond CW as he is a family man and has a lot of support from within. I love his passion and commitment. He takes me from the macro to the micro in seconds.
As stated above there is no hard and fast rule for how to find a disgorgement date unless a producer clearly labels their bottle. For vintage wines, I believe by the end of the decade this will be commonplace. For NV wines, it may take a bit longer and isn’t as important to me as knowing the base vintage. Most NV wines don’t show huge differences in disgorgement differences unless you are drinking them very, very close to the time of disgorging; when most of us buy them from the US shelves, any differences have merged together into one common wine.
For the majority of producers you can tell the approximate disgorgement date from the lot number on the bottle or a code on the cork. Often the lot number will contain one or two digits for the year and three digits for the day of the year (0-365/366). There are other digits too, of course, so you have to know what is what and every producer has their own scheme.
If you have specific questions, please post them here or ask me via email. I will do my best to answer them.
As mentioned above, starting with Issue 2.5 (the mini-update between Issues 2 and 3), I began running a feature that tends to focus on how to find the disgorgement date of a Chamapgne bottle that isn’t clearly marked. The latest Issue (Issue 6) is a bit of a departure from the norm as it focuses on Pierre Peters Cuvee Speciale and how it can be confusing on whether or not you have a Cuvee Speciale if your bottle is from before 1998 (this may sound silly but when the producer, US Importer, and various other Champagne writers can’t correctly answer the question I thought it was worth clearing up).
Bottom line, don’t be afraid to ask. I will do my best to answer and I’m sure others will too.
What’s the purpose of not just putting it on the label rather than all these little secret codes?