Louis Roederer Cristal Issues Statement Denying Claims Of Racism

Louis Roederer Cristal has

responded to a massive boycott over statements made about various rappers' patronage

of the pricey drink.

In a special Summer

2006 article titled "Bubbles & Bling" in The Economist magazine,

Rouzaud was quoted in an article stating that he viewed Hip-Hop's obsession

with the brand with "curiosity and serenity."

Rouzaud also said

"We can't forbid people from buying it. I'm sure Dom Perignon or Krug would

be delighted to have their business."

The story caused

massive backlash against Cristal, culminating in a boycott of the drink led

by Jay-Z, who pulled the expensive drink from his popular 40/40 sports bar franchise.

"I view his

comments as racist and will no longer support any of his products through any

of my various brands including The 40/40 Club nor in my personal life,"

Jay-Z said in a statement issued on Wednesday (June 14).

"A house like

Louis Roederer would not have existed since 1776 without being totally open

and tolerant to all forms of culture and art, including the most recent musical

and fashion styles which — like Hip-Hop — keep us in touch with modernity,"

Louis Roederer Cristal said in a statement to AllHipHop.com.

Cristal imports

over 50,000 cases of the champagne annually.