2002 Salon Blanc de Blancs Champagne

SKU #1154342 100 points Wine Enthusiast

 *Cellar Selection* The 35th and most recent vintage of Salon since the house was founded in 1905 is memorable and magnificent. Made only from Chardonnay grown in the Grand Cru village of Les Mesnil-sur-Oger, it combines intense minerality, a crisp textured core and the beginnings of maturity. The depths of this wine, with its layers of fruit and steeliness, are superb. Even after 12 years, it still needs to age further. Drink from 2018. (RV)  (12/2014)

99 points James Suckling

 Otherworldly in its piercing intensity, focus and sense of potential that is still remarkably yet to come, this is a staggeringly great Champagne. Superfine aromas of lemon and grapefruit plus commanding chalky minerals and an ethereal floral layer too, still very primary and unevolved. The palate is scintillating, moving with incredible velocity and lightning-like intensity - acidity is the driving force. Citrus flavors are locked in deep and the precision is almost impossible to comprehend, as is the length. Near perfect. Drink it in 10+ years.  (7/2015)

97 points Vinous

 Another highlight in this vertical, the 2002 Salon is also fascinating to taste after the 2004. Rich, opulent and intense, yet also very classic in the Salon house style, the 2002 possesses superb persistence and depth. The radiant vintage has softened the contours and given the wine fabulous depth to match its decidedly powerful personality. At the same time, the 2002 remains quite youthful. Next to the brighter and more finessed 2004, the 2002 offers more of a baritone-inflected expression of Chardonnay. (AG)  (6/2016)

97 points Wine Spectator

 *Collectibles* There's vibrancy and a sense of finesse to this rich and creamy Champagne, which is defined by racy acidity and a streak of chalky minerality. Offers an expansive palate of glazed apricot, oyster shell, toasted almond and spun honey flavors, accented by hints of ground ginger, dried lemon peel and marzipan. The finish is racy and persistent. Drink now through 2030. (AN)  (11/2015)

96 points Allen Meadows - Burghound

 A cool and pure nose features notes of citrus, in particular lemon rind, along with plenty of yeast, green apple, floral and iodine elements. The refined and intense middle weight flavors are shaped by an ultra-fine mousse that contributes to the sense of subtlety and finesse, all wrapped in a fantastically long and deep finish. Moreover, this is absolutely nowhere near being ready as the '02 version of Salon is going to age for years, indeed my 2022+ estimate may very well be 5 years too early. Either way, this is an estimable vintage for one of my favorite wines.  (10/2015)

95 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Light yellow. Intensely perfumed aromas of tangerine, poached pear, white flowers and candied ginger, with a vibrant mineral overtone. Velvety and seamless on the palate, offering densely packed orchard and citrus fruit flavors that gain spiciness and vivacity with air. Shows superb depth and finishes long, taut and minerally, with clinging pear and honeysuckle qualities. I have no doubt that this is a Champagne for the long haul; in fact, it really demands aging. (JR)  (12/2014)

K&L Notes

This exceptional vintage bottling comes from a one-hectare parcel owned by Salon called "Salon's Garden," along with 19 other smaller parcels in Mesnil-sur-Oger that were chosen by Aimé Salon back at the beginning of the 20th century. It was cellared in bottle for at least 10 years.

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By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/2/2015 | Send Email
Words fall short when trying to explain the perfection of the 2002 Salon, so I will start with the facts. This wine is made only in great vintages, only from old vines in the most famous of all Champagne Grand Crus - Mesnil. Because there is never any malolactic fermentation for Salon, the wine must be aged for a decade minimum on the lees, and that is why we are just seeing the 2002 now. This Champagne is the last word on precision and elegance and one of the longest Champagnes that I have ever had an opportunity to try. It will age for longer than most of us will live as bottles from the '20s and '30s prove today. Unfortunately there is not much of it...

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Chardonnay

- It's hard to believe that up until about 30 years ago, this extremely popular varietal hid behind the veil of geographical names like Chablis and Puligny-Montrachet. Now grown all over the world and bottled by its varietal name, Chardonnay has achieved a level of branding unlike any other wine. Surprisingly, though, what you get when you buy Chardonnay can differ greatly from country to country and even within one country, depending on the climate where it's grown and how it is vinified and aged. From fresh, crisp and minerally with apple and lemon notes to rich and buttery with tropical fruit overtones, Chardonnay runs the gamut. In France's Burgundy, Chardonnay is the source of the prized wines of Chablis, Corton-Charlemagne, M√Ęcon, Meursault and Montrachet. It also the foundation of exceptional Champagne, where it is blended with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier or vinified on its own into Blanc de Blancs. It is also extremely popular in California, and is gaining popularity in Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Spain and South Africa.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Champagne

- The French region of Champagne (comprised of the towns of Rheims, Epernay, and Ay) was the first region in the world to make sparkling wine in any quantity. Today, the name of the region is synonymous with the finest of all sparkling wines, and winemaking traditions of Champagne have become role models for sparkling wine producers, worldwide. Surprisingly, the region of Champagne is now responsible for only one bottle in 12 of all sparkling wine produced. Styles of champagne range from the basic brut (often blends of several vintages), single vintage champagnes, and rose. View our bestselling Champagne.
Alcohol Content (%): 12