Divers have found on July 6th bottles of Champagne on the bottom of the Baltic Sea between Sweden & Finland.  Visibility was bad so the divers couldn’t find the name of the ship or the bell and so brought up a bottle instead to try and date it!

The handmade bottle was label free but had an anchor on the cork.  Which suggests it is the premium brand Veuve Clicquot, as they have historically used this design.  This could possibly mean the bottles are over 200 years old!  If confirmed this will make it the oldest still drinkable Champagne in the world and will fetch top dollar.

The bottles are perfectly preserved at a depth of 55 metres in ideal conditions of cold and darkness, where they will remain for the time being with their exact location being kept a secret.

Wine expert Ella Gruessner Cromwell-Morgan has tasted the find and said it had not lost its fizz and was “absolutely fabulous”.   She described the Champagne as dark golden in colour with a very intense aroma.  “There’s a lot of tobacco, but also grape and white fruits, oak and mead,”  she said of the wine’s nose.  As for the taste, “it’s really surprising, very sweet (Champagne was much sweeter in those day’s) but still with some acidity.”  “I still have a glass in my fridge and keep going back every five minutes to take a breath of it.  I have to pinch myself to believe it’s real,” she said.

Until tests have been done and the sparkling wine dated and authenticated, the story goes that it could have been a shipment of King Louis XVI’s wine sent to the Russian Imperial Court.  If so it will fetch several millions…

If you don’t have the time to go deep sea diving for your Champagne, we can take you to Domaine Chandon owned by Moet et Chandon, on our Yarra Valley Winery Tours.  Where you can upgrade and indulge in their 4 half flute range tasting of Brut, Rose, Sparkling Red & Cuvee Riche.   Check out this link for tour example  – Yarra Valley Winery Tour.

[Discovery News – http://news.discovery.com/- sourced 20 July 2010]