Ace of Spades is the highest card in a deck of playing cards, and arguably the most luxurious of champagnes by the same name.
Formally known as Armand de Brignac, the champagne got its “Ace of Spades” nickname from its logo which is the same as the symbol on the playing card.
The champagne is a tête de cuvée that comes in opaque metallic bottles, and is strategically marketed to gratify the taste of luxury life.
No doubts that champagne is the drink of celebration, but the Armand de Brignac brand serves up much more than that. It represents a move up the ladder for any champagne loyalist.
The story behind Ace of Spades Champagne
Armand de Brignac champagne is made by the Cattier Champagne house founded in 1763, before the French Revolution.
Although the name “de Brignac” name was registered in the late 1940s or early 50s, it was not until 2006 that the champagne was launched.
However, the Cattier family had been setting aside parcels of reserve wines for the new ultra prestige Champagne project.
The family have been growing grapes in the Montagne de Reims area since 1763, and have been making Champagne since 1918. The house, still family owned, is run by Jean-Jacques Cattier and his son Alexandre.
Jean-Jacques Cattier revealed that name was chosen by his mother, based on a character in a novel named de Brignac.
The name remained unused until the champagne rolled off the cellars, but with the addition of the name “Armand” which was a requirement of the French industry group Comité Interprofessionnel du vin de Champagne (CIVC).
The Armand addition was necessary so as to not confuse the brand with the northwestern French village of “Brignac”, which sits just outside of the Champagne region itself.
Where Jay-Z and Ace of Spades meet
Jay Z formerly sang about another premium champagne brand, Cristal, in his songs till a certain racist comment made the rapper move onto the ‘next one’.
In 2006, Frederic Rouzaud, the managing director of the company that makes Cristal when asked on how its owners felt about seeing rappers drink the champagne in their videos by The Economist said:
“That’s a good question, but what can we do?” he replied. “We can’t forbid people from buying it. I’m sure Dom Pérignon or Krug would be delighted to have their business.”
In response to Rouzaud’s comments,Jay-Z said:
“That was like a slap in the face… I released a statement saying that I would never drink Cristal or promote it in any way or serve it at my clubs ever again.”
By October of the same year, in the video of his new song “Show Me What You Got”, the American rapper is seen refusing a bottle of Cristal before he accepts a mysterious gold bottle presented in a silver case.
Ever since then, Jay-Z has promoted the Champagne in his songs and clubs, helping it achieve its positioning and success.
In 2014, it was announced that Jay-Z had acquired the champagne brand for an undisclosed amount from Sovereign Brands. According to latest estimate by Forbes, he has helped the $300 Champagne become one of Hip-Hops favourite brands.
How Ace of Spades Champagnes are made
Ace of Spades Champagnes are produced in a multi-vintage style with a blend of all three Champagne grape varieties are used; Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier.
The champagne is made in the village of Rilly-la-Montagne, in the Montagne de Reims region of Champagne. The fruits come from the over 30 hectares of grape vine owned by the Cattier family, as well as growers from selected villages across the region.
The grapes are hand-picked, after which they are pressed in Coquard basket press closely located to the vineyards. It is just the very first press of 4,000 kilos of grapes that is used. This press produces a yield of 20.5 hectolitres of juice (the “cuvée”).
The champagnes are left to rest on lees in the cellars for three years before disgorgement by hand.To give the Champagne its complexity and life, the liqueur de dosage, which is added at this stage, has been aged in French oak casks for years. The wines are usually aged in the deepest part of the Cattier cellar (more than 30 meters underground).
Before bottling, each metalized bottle is finished by hand, with the application of French pewter labels, polished, and housed in a wooden lacquered gift box, ensuring every single bottle is unique.
The annual total for bottles stands at 60,000, a considerably low amount compared to other brands.
The Ace of Spades bottle
There is no argument to the fact that the Ace of Spades bottle stands it out significantly among other champagne brands – even Dom Perignon and Cristal – two of its biggest competitors.
The opaque bottle was inspired by a design of André Courrèges, a French fashion designer and one of the inventors of the miniskirt. Courrèges had approached the Cattier family in the 1990s to produce a limited-edition Champagne in a metal bottle to reflect the colours of his fashion house.
That innovative concept was decided upon when the Armand de Brignac champagen was set to be launched. The ‘Ace of Spades’ logo was attached to reflect the royal status of the Cattier family.
The bottles are completely paperless, as genuine pewter is used for the labels. They are hand-made and applied with subtle individual differences such that every bottle bears unique difference from the other.
The Armand de Brignac champagne bottles come in come in four colours. The flagship Ace of Spades Brut Gold bottle is, as the name goes, gold; the Blanc de Blancs, made exclusively from grand and premier cru chardonnay, comes with a silver label; the Ace of Spades Rosé comes in metallic pink; and the limited Golf Cuvée, released each year at the Masters Golf Tournament, sports metallic green.
How to drink Armand de Brignac (Ace of Spades) Champagne
For every premium drink, there is definitely a set way to go about drinking it, and same goes for Ace of Spades. That is not to say that the choice of how to drink does not lie with the consumer no more.
The Cattier Champagne house recommends that the bubbly wine is served at a temperature of 6–8°C. This is achieved by placing the bottle in the refrigerator the night before or in an ice bucket for half an hour.
A flute or tulip-shaped glass is also recommended and the pour should not be no more than two-thirds full. To ensure that the Champagne does not lose its effervescence, the glass must have no remaining trace of any washing-up products. A broad-rimmed glass should never be used.
When pouring, start by looking at the wine, say the Champagne house experts, “then bring the flute up to your nose and breathe in slowly to perceive the scents and aromas. Finally, take a sip and keep it in your mouth for a few moments to discover the Champagne’s personality.”
Ace of Spades Cuvees
There are five cuvées in the Armand de Brignac range:
- Armand de Brignac Gold Brut – the first bottle to be released as the flagship of the champagne brand in 2006.
- Armand de Brignac Rosé – first introduced in 2008. The pink colour is gotten from the inclusion of 12% of still red wine, harvested from old vines.
- Armand de Brignac Demi Sec – launched towards the end of 2015. It is a sweeter style of champagne with an assemblage of 40% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay, and 20% Pinot Meunier.
- Armand de Brignac Blanc de Blancs – comprises of comprising 100% Chardonnay. The first bottles were released to the public in 2008.
- Armand de Brignac Blanc de Noirs – the rarest cuvée in the Armand de Brignac range, with fewer than 3,000 bottles created each year. The first bottle were launched at Horrods in 2015.
Only the Arman de Brignac Gold Brut and Rose are available in Nigeria.
How much is bottle of Ace of Spades in Nigeria? What is the carton price of Ace of Spades in Nigeria?
If you are tasty for a rich flow of luxurious, golden and bubbly goodness that comes from the Ace of Spades champagne, here is the most current price that they go for.
|Product||Size||Amount in Carton||
Unit Price (NGN)
|Carton Price (NGN)|
|Armand de Brignac (Ace of Spades) Brut||
|Armand de Brignac (Ace of Spades) Rose||75cl||