2004 was a fantastic Chardonnay vintage in Champagne, and there's no more definitive statement of its grace and beauty than this 1.84 ha walled vineyard dating from 1698. The cool winter ceded to gentle mid-summer heat, followed by a prolonged Indian Summer when cooler nights engendered complexity and an almost cerebral linearity. Scents of yellow flowers, nectarine, hints of smoke and slate seduce and beguile, leading to a palate where hints of exoticism are tempered by a firm citric grip and an astonishingly long finish. (SF)
Aromas of lemon sorbet, chalky notes and white flowers with toasted almonds, backed by a strong, stony mineral thread. Super acidity drive on the palate with a core of pure lemons and grapefruit. Long, smooth-tannin finish. This is both concentrated and elegant. A single location and single variety. Amazing quality here.
The 2004 Clos du Mesnil captures all the pedigree of this epic Blanc des Blancs vintage. A soaring, majestic Champagne, the 2004 dazzles from the very first taste with its crystalline purity and brightness. In two tastings so far, the 2004 has been nothing less than a total showstopper. The vertical structure and pure, tightly-coiled power are the stuff dreams are made of. There is little doubt the 2004 is one of the very finest Clos du Mesnils in recent memory. Will it join the 1979, 1988 and 1996 as one of the all-time greats? Now, that is a tasting I would love to do! (AG) 98+
Evocative of a Bernini sculpture, this vibrant Champagne is equally about the statuesque frame of acidity and chalky underpinning as it is the finely honed details, including the silken texture, the aromas of lime blossom, saffron and incense, and the expressive, woven range of crème de cassis, ground espresso, kumquat, crystallized honey and toast point flavors. Long and focused, echoing the rich profile on the finish. *Collectibles* (AN)
An elegant turn for Clos du Mesnil, this wine takes the massive, masculine power the vineyard can deliver and contrasts it with delicate scents of narcissus, hibiscus and something wild, like rooibos tea. It has a more subtle intensity than the 2002 from the site, though it shares the substantial structure this terroir can give, steeped in chalk notes. Few Chardonnays have the stature and longevity of Clos du Mesnil.
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