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In honor of the centenary birthday of Theo Fabergé, the atelier that he founded has joined forces with Château Champagne de Bligny to create a unique bejeweled bottle holder and one-of-kind vintage Champagne. The late grandson of celebrated jeweler Carl Fabergé and great-grandson of Maison Fabergé founder Gustav Fabergé, Theo Fabergé designed this elegant piece 25 years ago, but it was never produced. To pair with the singular style of the egg, Jean-Remy Rapeneau, third-generation owner of the Champagne house, has created its first-ever vintage Champagne, 2013 Clos de Chateau, which is made with six grape varieties rather than the usual one, two, or three.
Produced in a limited edition of just 100 pieces, with a total of 750 planned, the Creations Theo Fabergé egg-shaped coaster and Château Champagne de Bligny 2013 Clos de Chateau are sold only as a pair for $5,400, exclusively through Wine Access. Only 30 sets of the Champagne Egg Creation have been made available to the United States market. As the specially designed bottle is made to fit into the holder, it is not possible to buy either separately; in the future, bottles will be available solely to those who purchased the original set. The body of the coaster is made of brass, sterling silver, and gold and is decorated with six hand-faceted rubies to represent the six grape varieties in the Champagne. Each is numbered and engraved with Theo Fabergé’s signature. The polished tin label on the bottle matches the curves of the base and forms the upper portion of the “egg.”
Theo Fabergé first designed the Champagne dishes in 1978, the same year that he won the world prize for Ornamental Turning for a box he created to celebrate the Silver Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. That’s when Fabergé first conceived and made a pair of Champagne dishes. “These dishes included the family’s signature use of swags, set with rubies, and of course the use of his incredible lathes,” Philip Birkinstein, chairman of Creations Theo Fabergé, told Robb Report—but they didn’t see the light of day for some time. “The dishes were in the Creations Theo Fabergé design cupboard, held at the head office. There never seemed to be the perfect opportunity to launch this stylish design.”
In 2013, Jean-Remy Rapeneau and his family decided to create their first vintage Champagne using the six varieties grown in Château Champagne de Bligny’s clos, or enclosed vineyard. In addition to Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Pinot Meunier, his family also planted Arbane, Petit Meslier, and Pinot Blanc, three of the other varieties (along with Pinot Gris) that are allowed in Champagne production, which account for just 0.3 percent of vines in the region.
“Most growers use the easy varieties, but the old varieties are more difficult to grow, and we take that risk to bring excellence to the wine as well,” Rapeneau explained to Robb Report. “The Clos du Château de Bligny is now the only estate clos in Champagne with the six varieties of the appellation.”
Rapeneau’s vision paid off; 2013 produced an excellent vintage across the region, and this rare cuvee is truly exceptional. Château Champagne de Bligny 2013 Clos de Chateau offers a delicate mousseand aromas of Gala apple, bergamot, orange blossom and a soft hint of nutmeg. It is energetic at first sip, with vibrant acidity and Bartlett pear, lemon zest, marzipan and vanilla flavors. A sense of creaminess and a touch of brioche flavor continues on the palate, mingling with notes of orange zest and rose petal.
The house’s first vintage proves to be a worthy pairing for this piece celebrating Theo Fabergé’s centenary and Birkinstein agrees. “As we discussed both of our legacies and histories, it seemed like the best fit to celebrate the beautiful things that stand the test of time.”