Wednesday 13 June 2012

Five Champagnes To Close The Tasting Season

The last tasting of the season in one of my tasting groups is always about Champagne. This time it was Jacques that presented five bottles for us - thanks for a great line up!
As usual, due to the fact that I taste too little Champagne, my guesses were way of... We did get the vintage correct though.
Tasted double blind.

2002 Blanc de Noir, Andre Clouet
A fine, elegant, buttery nose with notes of red apples, butter cup flowers, dry biscuits and some cap gun notes. A little laid back. Not that complex but very yummy on the nose.
The taste is more liniar than the nose with notes of lemon peel, hyacinth, minerals and some smoke. The fruit gets sweeter with air, more lemoncello that lemon peel after a while. Very nice.
Blanc de Noir?? I guessed a Blanc de Blancs... There were not a hint of Pinot Noir in this one. Go figure.
87p   (tasted 2012/06)

2002 Special Club Vieilles Vignes de Chardonnay, Pierre Gimmonet
This was a new acquaintance for me, and a nice one at that. The nose opens with lots of freshly baked bread and notes of green apples, grey pears, milk chocolate and a steely note. Deep and fine.
The taste is young, tight and fresh with notes of pear ice cream, green apples, minerals and a fine sandy note. Long and fine. This has some more maturing to do. Very, very good.
I guessed Blanc de Blancs on this one too...
90p   (tasted 2012/06)

2002 Henriot
My winner in this line up. And I wasn´t surprised when the bottle was presented. I just love the Henriot style. The nose is racy, elegant and utterly magnificent with notes of grapefruit, cap gun smoke, sea shells, burned butter and the scent of freshly fallen snow...:-) Then there is sweet minerals and a touch of oak. I could sit and sniff this all night long. Just great!
The taste is elegant, aristocratic and pure with notes of butter fried nuts, orange peel, almond paste, yellow apples and a touch of bonfire. A very long and balanced finish. A lovely purity. This is a keeper!
95p   (tasted 2012/06)

2002 La Grande Année, Bollinger
A deep, cool, fine nose with notes of vanilla biscuits, orange blossom water, milk chocolate, caramell and christmas spices. Somewhat restrained. Very young. The sweetness of the fruit is very fine. Deep.
The taste is big, intense and elegant with notes of sweet minerals, mature red apples, warm herbs and a touch of oak. A very long, vivid finish. A great piece of work, but it is too young at this stage. I would expect it to really blossom in 5-7 years.
92p   (tasted 2012/06)

2002 Dom Perignon
A tight, promising, deep nose with notes of red apples, sweet minerals, ginger, summer flowers and a scent of freshly grounded coffee, which in hindsight would have been a give away... Very complex and fine. Still very young.
The taste is all about structure, purity and intensity at this stage. With some vigorous swirling notes of lemon and orange peel, assorted nuts, cold coffe and dried flowers emerge from the glass. The acidity is pure like a mountain river. Very, very long. This is going places, but for now not as hedonistic as the Dom can be. In last years seasons end we had the 1993, 1983 and 1973 Dom Perignon. This beauties needs time...
93p   (tasted 2012/06)