Philipponnat Blanc de Noirs 2008
We love the 2008 vintage in Champagne. Capricious at first, the season blossomed in September when an extended period of sun-kissed days and cool nights arrived, giving the crisp grapes the perfect end of season boost. The resulting harvest provided fruit with ripe clear profiles and exceptional acidity; the ideal material for making very fine Champagne. Whilst there are many wonderful wines in 2004 and 2006, 2008 to us is undoubtedly the finest vintage since 2002.
Philipponnat is a house with a great name amongst connoisseurs; the great Clos des Goisses vineyard is widely recognised as one of Champagne’s very finest sites. It was while tasting Clos des Goisses at Philipponnat that we discovered the subject of today’s offer, a Champagne that stood out amongst Philipponnat’s characteristically strong range.
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 love 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.
“Philipponnat's 2008 Blanc de Noirs is fabulous. Dried apricot, cherry, flowers, almonds and spices grace the palate as this weightless yet expressive Champagne opens up in the glass. Pliant and distinctly red-toned in its flavor profile, the 2008 impresses for its sensual personality and impeccable overall balance. The 2008 is made entirely from 1er and Grand Cru fruit, and was disgorged in April 2014.” 92/100 Antonio Galloni, Vinous.com