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A benchmark vintage, a benchmark Blanc de Noirs
16 April 2019

Champagne’s 2012 vintage is going to be big news. As the first few wines have released we’ve been hugely impressed by their concentration and intensity, marrying bold flavours with precision and freshness. At this relatively early juncture we’d put them somewhere between the two great vintages 2002 and 2008, bringing some of the ripeness of 2002 with the keen lines of 2008 – a combination sure to get Champagne followers’ hearts racing…

Today’s release from Philipponnat is one of the best we’ve tasted so far, with superb pitch and definition to the rich, spiced red fruit character. It was a growing season that season that particularly suited Pinot Noir; the crop naturally thinned by hail and frost, allowed to achieve excellent ripeness under warm September skies. Tasted now on numerous occasions, and it is without doubt the best rendition of this cuvee Philipponant has made. It takes the wonderful steely line of the 2008 and covers it in an extra layer of bold, precise, concentrated fruit. Beautifully structured, it has a high definition mousse that caresses the palate, supporting expressive notes of beignet lemon peel, golden spices and bright red fruits, all underpinned by a beam of fabulous acidity. It has huge character but also precision, with as much emphasis on flavour as freshness. It’s a delicious combination and a year after disgorgement (carried out in May 2018), it is in a very good place indeed.

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