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Since taking charge of Champagne Philipponnat in 1999, Charles Phillipponnat has created one of the greatest arrays of Pinot Noir-based cuvées in all Champagne, led by his transcendent Clos des Goisses.
Yet, with his masterly Grand Blanc, Charles demonstrates that he is just as brilliant with Chardonnay. Partially fermented and aged in barrel, and then aged five to seven years on the lees before disgorgement, Grand Blanc makes the most of its origins: the finest chalk terroirs of the Côte des Blancs and the Montagne de Reims, including a small portion from Clos des Goisses.
But what happens when Grand Blanc is left to age on its lees for two decades? That, friends, produces a special kind of magic. Nearly suspended in time, Grand Blanc has the chance to broaden and deepen, while losing none of its highly mineral, floral freshness.
So, when Charles was preparing to release his 2000 Grand Blanc in 2007, he decided to put a few hundred bottles aside for much longer aging in Philipponnat’s cold chalk cellars.
Finally disgorged last March, 2000 Philipponnat Grand Blanc Extra-Brut “L.V.” (for Long Vieillissement) is both supremely complex and amazingly youthful. And its luscious opulence allowed Charles to reduce the dosage from the 5.2 g/l he used in 2007 to just 4.5 g/l for his 2021 disgorgement.
While a fantastic drink today, 2000 Philipponnat Grand Blanc Extra-Brut “L.V.” will easily age in a good cellar for another decade or two.
Having tasted the wine last fall, we secured an allocation before it sold out. The wine has now arrived. And the price is ridiculously low for perfectly aged Champagne of this stature: $149.95 a bottle.
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Antonio Galloni - Vinous Media
“The 2000 Extra-Brut Grand Blanc L.V., a late release from the maison, is a gorgeous wine. It will appeal most to readers looking for a Champagne with a good deal of the complexity that only develops in Champagne over many years. The 2000 appears suspended in time, as those more mature notes are balanced by a good bit of freshness. Lemon confit, mint, tangerine, white flowers and tropical accents all grace this inviting Blanc de Blancs from Philipponnat. Dosage is 4.5 grams per liter. Disgorged: March, 2021.”
John Gilman - View From the Cellar
“The 2000 Philipponnat “Grand Blanc L. V.” is a new release, with the wine having been disgorged in March of 2021, after fully twenty years aging on its fine lees! It was finished with a dosage of 4.5 grams per liter. The wine offers up a lovely bouquet of pear, apple, warm bread, hazelnut, chalky soil tones and a smoky topnote. On the palate the wine is bright, full-bodied, focused and complex, with a fine core, excellent mineral drive, refined mousse and a long, well-balanced and classy finish. This is a very good example of the vintage that is now drinking at its peak, but with the freshness of a late disgorgement, so that it still has a lovely spine of acidity and backend bounce. Lovely juice.”
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