American Marketer


Veuve Clicquot lowers wines into sea for aging process

July 24, 2014

Vevue 185 Veuve Clicqout cellar is lowered into sea


LVMH-owned Veuve Clicquot is creating a cellar in the Baltic Sea to age its Champagnes in a dark and cool location.

The venture started when a ship wreck with bottles of Veuve Clicquot, dating back to 1839, was discovered by divers in 2010 and the Champagnes held their taste. The brand decided to place a cellar in the sea to try to replicate the tastes.

Swimming with wines

The shipwreck was discovered in the Åland Islands, between Sweden and Finland, and the location of the shipwreck will serve as the spot for the submerged cellar.

Divers discovered 168 bottles of Champagne, including 47 bottles of Veuve Clicquot from 1839 to 1841. Several months after the discovery a tasting of 10 of the bottles proved that the Baltic Sea was a good wine cellar.

The controlled cellar will be about 131 feet below sea level and will be closely monitored by chefs de caves. The controlled science experiment will be compared with a duplicate selection in the brand’s chalk cellars in Riems, Germany.

Samples will be tasted by a panel of professionals and compared with the duplicate wines.


Ship lowering cellar into sea

Also, the samples will be studied to discover the effects of the Baltic Sea on the aging process.

The cool temperatures, darkness and pressure of the sea will act in the process of aging. The bottles were placed in a metal cage created specifically for the experiment.

Aging wines creates a level of suspense for enthusiasts and creates a sense of brand dedication and longevity toward its products and the consumers.

For instance, LVMH-owned Dom Pérignon released a new Champagne that had been maturing in the brand’s cellars for the past 16 years.

The Champagne was revealed in Iceland to accentuate the intense flavors. Dom Pérignon’s release of the Second Plénitude Champagne offers a glimpse into the dedication and time each bottle requires and will likely enrich the consumer’s understanding of the spirit (see story).