1997 Salon "Le Mesnil" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne

SKU #1040641 96 points Wine & Spirits

Outer quote mark The pure essence of limestone, this vintage is maturing into the grandeur of a great Le Mesnil Champagne while remaining fresh and lively. It offers rich lemon curd and baked apple flavors, chalky power and gravitas without weight. The flavors remain impacted below the limestone earthiness, the wine's structure and balance suited to extended aging. Inner quote mark (12/2010)

96 points Wine Enthusiast

Outer quote mark The fabled Salon's latest release is much riper and softer than the great steely 1996 vintage. This suggests it is likely to be ready to drink soon. In the meantime, the acidity is supremely fresh, with grapefruit edges and green apple flavors. And then there is minerality and a tight, structured aftertaste as a reminder that this great Champagne is always going to be more than its fruit. *Cellar Selection* (RV) Inner quote mark (12/2008)

95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Outer quote mark From a recently released bottle disgorged in 2018, the 1997 Blanc de Blancs Le Mesnil Brut is showing very well indeed, offering up aromas of citrus oil, crushed chalk, white flowers, warm bread and iodine that are appreciably more youthful than the more mature dried fruit tones that readers will find in bottles of the original disgorgement. On the palate, the wine is medium to full-bodied, tensile and incisive, with superb concentration, chalky structure and a long, searingly mineral finish. (WK) Inner quote mark (8/2019)

93 points John Gilman

Outer quote mark 1997 is certainly a more forward vintage of Salon, and consequently, it is drinking very well at age 13 and is uncharacteristically wide open and ready for business at such a young age (for Salon). The bouquet is deep, pure and lovely, as it offers up scents of apple, lemon, warm bread, hard limestone minerality a touch of almond skin and incipient notes of the white chocolate to come with a bit more bottle age. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, complex and blossoming in terms of structure, with a fine core of fruit, lovely, refined mousse and very good length and grip on the deep and powerful finish. Inner quote mark (9/2010)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

Outer quote mark Light yellow with a slow bead. Deeply perfumed nose displays waxy orchard and pit fruit scents, along with toasty lees, woodsmoke and wet stone. Weighty pear and yellow peach flavors are given a bitter edge by fruit skin and quinine qualities, picking up salty minerals on the back end. Finishes with firm grip and powerful echoes of minerals and pear skin. This is already beginning to show complexity. (JR) Inner quote mark (11/2008)

K&L Notes

Salon is one of the great names in Champagne for a very good reason. It is made only in great vintages (the decade of the '80s only produced '82,'83,'85 and '88) and only from grapes from one village, the Grand Cru of Mesnil. This village grows the most sought after Chardonnay in Champagne. Half of the vineyards that make the wine are owned by Salon outright, and the other half come from farmers that Salon has been working with for generations. The vines average 40 years of age. Salon suppresses malolactic fermentation for maximum freshness and longevity - an iconoclastic move for a Cote de Blanc producer. The production hovers around 8,000 six-bottle cases, so the wine is always hard to come by but very worth seeking out! (Gary Westby, K&L Champagne buyer)

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Price: $999.95
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