As always, the 2003 Dom Pérignon has a lot to say. Bold, powerful and intensely phenolic in feel, the 2003 packs serious energy to match its explosive personality. The combined effects of a spring frost that decimated yields and a unrelentingly hot summer combined to produce one of the most powerful young Dom Pérignons I have ever tasted. The heavy presence of Pinot (62%) is felt in the wine's volume and breadth, making it one of the most vinous Dom Pérignons in recent memory. Given its structural depth, I imagine the 2003 will drink well for many, many years. Interestingly Chef de Caves Richard Geoffroy adds that the 2003 was lower in sugars than the 2002, but richer in phenolics. (AG)
The 2003 is one of the most unusual Dom Perignons I have ever tasted, going back to 1952. Readers will remember that 2003 was a torrid vintage across northern Europe...The 2003 Dom Perignon is a big, broad shouldered wine. It does not have the seductiveness of the 2000, nor the power of the 2002. It is instead very much its own wine. In 2003 Geoffroy elected to use more Pinot Noir than is typically the case, and that comes through in the wine’s breath and volume. The 2003 is a big, powerful Champagne that will require quite a bit of time to shed some of its baby fat. The trademark textural finesse is there, though. I expect the 2003 to be a highly divisive Champagne because of its extreme personality, but then again, many of the world’s legendary wines were made from vintages considered freakish at the time. The 2003 is an atypically, rich, powerful, vinous Dom Perignon loaded with fruit, structure and personality. It is not for the timid, but rather it is a wine for those who can be patient. No one has a crystal ball, but personally I will not be surprised if in 20 years’ time the 2003 is considered an iconic Champagne. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2038. 94+ points. (AG)
This was the vintage, a seminal vintage for Richard Geoffroy, that gave them the confidence to make a 2009 -- and push it so far with ripeness. Very light, fresh bead. '2003 made us understand so much about extreme conditions.' Spicy, dried cut-peel nose. Big and bold with a bit of bitterness on the end -- orange peel! Oxidative handling of juice means it is ageing much slower than usual. It was released in 2011 but it could have done with longer. Muscle. 18.5/20 points. Drink to 2025. (JR)
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