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1996 Veuve Clicquot "La Grande Dame" Brut Champagne

SKU #1013111 95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Tightly-packed with notes of citrus oil, orange rind, white peach, honeysuckle, and brioche, the medium to full-bodied 1996 La Grande Dame Brut should age well for 15-20 years. Crisp, fresh, and backward, it is another brilliant example from the exquisite 1996 vintage. (RP)  (12/2005)

95 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Deep, highly complex aromas of citrus skin, nutmeg, porcini mushroom, toasted almond and clove. Rich, dry and impressively deep; superconcentrated and oily. A chewy, spicy Champagne that seemed to grow fresher as it opened in the glass. Really explosive on the aftertaste, finishing with a clinging quality and powerful spicy, nutty flavors. A major mouthful of Champagne, at its best at the dinner table. Displays the combination of high ripeness and high acidity of this vintage at its best. (ST)  (12/2004)

93 points John Gilman

 The ’96 Grande Dame is one of the most reassuringly fine bottles of bubbly that I have tasted in quite some time from Veuve Clicquot. The bouquet is deep, complex and very refined, as it wafts from the glass in a yeasty mix of grapefruit, lemon, bread dough, complex minerality and a touch of the toastiness to come. On the palate the wine is medium-full, long and beautifully focused, with a solid kernel of fruit at the core, bright acids, elegant mousse, and excellent length and grip on the youthful finish. Impressive juice. (Drink between 2007-2025) 93+  (5/2008)

93 points Wine & Spirits

 The flavors of this wine are as colorful and joyous as a Marimekko print, with the yellows of chamomile, the reds of currants and wild strawberries. Bright as they are, the flavors have matured into full-bodied richness and smooth, silken elegance. A festive wine for langoustines or lobster thermidor.  (12/2005)

93 points Wine Enthusiast

 Selected from the eight grand cru villages in which Madame owned vineyards, this lean, youthful wine is delicious now but could use additional bottle age to broaden out. Toasty and citrusy, there’s a lot of fruit here, yet it retains a great sense of elegance.  (12/2005)

93 points Wine Spectator

 A touch cheesy in aroma, this settles into apple, peach and hazelnut flavors. On the sharp side, with a grainy texture that emerges on the finish. A powerful, dry Champagne, with a biscuitlike aftertaste. Needs food. (BS)  (11/2006)

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Price: $199.99
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- 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.


- 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.
Alcohol Content (%): 12.5