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Prestige Cuvée Champagne wines are defined as those wines that come in elaborate, expensive bottles.

Answer: False.

Prestige cuvée Champagne bottles may come dressed in finery, but it is what’s inside that earns them the title. These are the finest (and most expensive) wines that a producer makes, from the best grapes in the top, highest-rated crus or vineyards of Champagne. The French refer to these singular offerings as têtes de cuvée, a term that can be loosely translated as “top batch.” Prestige cuvées are almost always vintage-dated, and are made only in exceptional harvests, on average 3 times per decade. One reason for this is that Champagne is one of the most northern wine growing regions in the world—at roughly the same latitude as the U.S.-Canadian border—with an inherently cool climate where the grapes struggle to ripen. Prestige cuvées are aged longer than other vintage Champagne wines (on average 10 years versus 3 years) and continue to develop in the bottle for another decade.

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