Blanc de Noirs, 2008


Philipponnat’s Blanc de Noirs 2008 is the very first 100% Pinot Noir from the estate and it completely swept us off our feet. In contrast to Clos des Goisses, which generally requires many years in bottle to truly reveal its greatness, the Blanc de Noirs is already wonderfully expressive and generous. “Pure pleasure” was the cry that went up when the team tasted it here in London. There is wonderful clarity to the decidedly red fruit character on display, great precision and a sense of expression that is all Blanc de Noirs, full yet crisp. It is superbly well crafted precisely because it offers so much while demanding so little – weightless flavours touch on notes of summer red fruits, almond and baking spices, before finishing with a touch of smoke and sunshine. We absolutely ove this Champagne, the price seems exceedingly fair for a vintage Blanc de Noir Cuvee from a great house and it should continue to shine for at least a decade.

Contains Sulphites.

About Philipponnat

The arrival of Charles Philipponnat in 2000 appears to have resulted in a turn in Champagne Philliponnat’s fortunes. Not only does their flagship wine, Clos de Goisses, continue to get rave reviews, and rightly so as this is widely acknowledge as one of THE great single vineyards in Champagne, but also the quality and consistency of the rest of their range has never been higher. In total the estate comprises 17 ha of which Clos des Goisses is 5.5ha, however only a part of this is actually used for the single vineyard bottling. With vineyards in the outstanding Premiers and Grands Crus communes of Ay and Mareuil sur Ay, Pinot Noir is king and represents two thirds of total plantations. The house has a solera-type system in place for the reserve wine (which accounts for 20% of the blends) and the bare minimum that any of the cuvees age sur lie is 3 years.

40% of the wine is fermented in barrels that range from 1 to 5 years old, the rest is vinifed in steel tanks. Their sun-blanched vineyards ensure that fruit is harvested ripe and as such there is no malolactic fermentation carried out to keep vitality in the wines. The top two wines are also characterised by low dosage, between 4-5 g/l residual sugar. These are ageworthy champagnes of structure, heady fruit and freshness.

Appellation: Champagne

Champagne is the world's original and most famous region for the production of sparkling wine. A range of styles are produced from the Non-Vintage, through Rose, Vintage and more recently a host of prestige, Vintage luxury cuvees. The three permitted grape varieties are Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier.