Champagne novelties

Ruinart Dom Ruinart 2007                                                92->95

The first Dom Ruinart crafted by chef de cave Frédéricic Panaïotis. Wide open, buttery nose with ripe Chardonnay profile with apple, lemon, liquorice and mild toastiness. Behind the ripe tones there is also a cool touch of green fruit. Full-bodied, succulent palate with a touch of firming phenolics on the richly fruity back palate of yeasty fullness. Lovely, athletic acid structure backing up the generosity of the fruit. A Dom Ruinart with mid-term potential.

Charles Heidsieck Blanc des Millénaires 2004                        94->97

Glossy gold toned colour. Full-on creamy nose with rapidly emerging toastiness, ground coffee tones and pristine white fruit layers. A fine combination of fresh and dried fruit and yeast-complexed aromas. The palate is at the same time linear and driven but also wonderfully sumptuous with viscous texture bringing on seductive roundness. There is tension and feisty acidity but in the background of the ever-increasing generosity. Between January and March 2018 the wine had opened up significantly started to gain Charles’s hallmark generosity. Hugely promising and already delivering. November 2016 disgorgement tasted, 9g/l dosage.

Charles Heidsieck Vintage 2006                                                92->96

Deep golden colour. Highly creamy nose with emerging toasty opulence. Full of luscious, ripe fruit. Opens beautifully in the glass. There is impressive generosity on the mouth-filling, oily palate, boosted by concentrated, age-mellowed fruitiness. Long, almost chewy but appropriately fresh finish. Finely balanced at 10g/l dosage.

Charles Heidsieck Vintage Rosé 2005                                    93->96

Pretty, orange hued onion skin colour. Deliciously toasty nose with sweet red and white fruit mix with peaches, spiciness, coffee, ashes and fruitcake aromas. Full-on rich and round palate speaks sunshine with real vinosity and muscular structure. Soft, seamlessly integrated acidity that carries on until the sweetly beguiling finish. Already monumental and bound to grow in richness and complexity.

Charles Heidsieck Blanc de Blancs NV (base 2012)            93->96

This brand new wine follows the Charles Heidsieck non-vintage blanc de blancs tradition that was initiated back in 1947. The aimed style is sumptuous as one can expect from the house but cellar master Cyril Brun has also wanted to highlight freshness of youth in it to make a clear difference to age-mellowed and concentrated the Blanc des Millénaires. Pure and pristinely fruity, coffee and cream laden nose with ample lemony floral fruitiness with a touch of pepper. The palate expresses more minerality and salinity increasing towards the back palate. The wine hides its 10g/l dosage feeling perfectly balanced and fresh, even a little tight at this point. Stunningly creamy texture with minuscule gently bubbles waking up the palate. Long, driven palate with impeccable precision.

Lanson Clos Lanson 2007                                                            92->94

Shiny golden colour. There is pleasant charred, bonfire expression on the coffee and cream nose with honey and butter tones in the back. The oak is noticeable but pleasant. Velvety opulent palate with caressing smoothness and vinosity to it. A mouthful with an open, welcoming character to it. Will not be one of the longest lived of Clos Lansons but one to enjoy now. 

Laurent-Perrier Grand Siècle NV (06, 04, 02)                         93->96

There is an unusual voluptuousness and generosity to this 2006 based cuvée, which gets complemented by 20% of 2004 and 20% of 2002 wines. Lovely fullness and width but there is fine freshness too, bringing vivacity and drive to the calm, satiny palate.

Laurent-Perrier Vintage 2008                                                92->95

Amazing purity of Chardonnay dominates this precise, extremely vivacious wine of notable nervosity of freshness. Lot of green apple, pear and apricot notes alongside emerging reductive toasty charm. Truly classy and built to last.

Moët & Chandon Grand Vintage Collection 2002            93->95

Open, inviting, sweetly fruity, maturing nose with fine pastry, grilled almond notes but also a vegetal edge. Concentrated, mouth-filling palate of great generosity and textural smoothness. Long-lingering sweet finish full of toast laden tropical fruit. Highly enjoyable today.

Moët & Chandon Grand Vintage 2009                                    92->95

Beautiful fruity nose with ripe, lush Pinot Noir taking the lead role but there is also a strong presence of tropical Chardonnay fruit. Pristinely clean fruitiness and charmingly creamy texture on the easy to approach, soft palate, which comes with both length and width. A friendly, fruity vintage, which also has the structure to age.

Moët & Chandon Grand Vintage Rosé 2009                        91->95

There is an attractive grilled note to the vanilla laden ripe apricot nose with wine gums, lingonberries, roses and menthol. Super fruity and rather open upon launch. Rich, candy-toned palate of lush fruit and succulence. There is a gentle bite of tannin towards the back palate. Eager to impress but has the structure to age too.

Philipponnat Blanc de Noirs 2011                                    88->90

A small batch of some 12000 bottles instead of the common 30000 bottles made using only three crus; Aÿ, Verzy and Mareuil-sur-Aÿ. As Cuvée 1522 was not made, Blanc de Noirs benefited from some of its fruit producing a happily surprising 2011. Super fragrant nose with peach marmalade and peach pie fruit dominating with appley characters and gentle spicy tones. Overt, wide-open nose but much tighter on the palate that shows some stylish, cool restraint. Rather singular but pleasantly clean and fruit-packed. Recent, January 2018 disgorgement)

Philipponnat Cuvée 1522 2008                                                89->93           

From a magnum: Age-complexed nose with apple, peach, peach stones, yeast and nutty notes with a layer of oxidative tones: soya sauce and bruised apple. The tight palate is radiantly fruity and driven but it comes with fine substance and textural appeal. Super young still in magnum, craving time.

Philipponnat Juste Rosé 2007                                                93->95

The 2007 Just Rosé is a super charmer with peachy colour and equally peach laden fruit. Lovely edge of toast, exotic spices and patisserie. The most exiting element is the seductively silky and winey palate full of super succulent fruit. Soft and mellow, well-built palate full of character. Delightful. November 2017 disgorgement tasted.

Philipponnat Mareuil-sur-Ay Extra Brut 2008                        89->91

Pale peachy colour. Opulence of exotic notes on the peach and papaya nose topped with classy pastry richness. A fine combination of delicacy and vinosity, on the satiny palate. The racy acidity ties finely to the mellow harmony of the seductive texture. Caresses your palate.

Philipponnat Les Cintres 2008                                    9296

There is so much hidden power here. Still youthful and holding back on the minerality driven nose with chalky and earthy complexity alongside opulent, but for the time being reserved fruitiness. Lots of powerful Pinot notes pushing through with time in the glass. Great concentration on the palate that has enough freshness and energy to bring welcome vivacity to the whole. Succulent, ripe fruitiness and firmness of structure for extended ageing but it gives plenty of its charms instantly, too.