In the prosperous and powerful region of Champagne, Count Thibaud IV, King of Navarre, embodied the height of the political, economic and artistic influence of Champagne from 1222 to 1253. Thibaud IV was a king, lord, manager, singer, conqueror and explorer all rolled into one. Captivated by a courtly love for Blanche de Castille, the future mother of Saint-Louis, he left for the crusades in 1239. He brought back two treasures from the Orient, the like of which had never been seen before in the Christian world - the Damask rose and an example of a new grape variety, now known to be the ancestor of the Chardonnay grape. Thus begins the legend of the Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs, always a vintage Champagne, and the finest example of the Taittinger House.