2008 Billecart-Salmon "Cuvée Elisabeth" Brut Rosé Champagne

SKU #1537360 98 points Decanter

Outer quote mark Despite ageing on its lees for 10 years, it remains almost shockingly youthful, its vividly primary flavours of red cherry, strawberry and nectarine wrapped up in a taut, tense frame. It’s silky in texture and intricately complex on the long, elegantly harmonious finish, underlined by a saline chalkiness, and it demonstrates all the requisite completeness and character for long ageing, promising a slow and dignified evolution to come. (PL) Inner quote mark (5/2021)

98 points James Suckling

Outer quote mark This is very vinous with aromas of iron, strawberries, old roses and geraniums. So aromatic. Full-bodied, really intense and layered with super dryness and depth. Lots of saline and spicy character at the end, such as clove and pepper, as well as hints of flowers and melted butter. Strawberry tart at the end. Inner quote mark (5/2021)

97 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Outer quote mark Disgorged with seven grams per liter dosage, the 2008 Brut Rosé Cuvée Elisabeth Salmon is one of the finest wines I've tasted from Billecart in recent years. Unwinding in the glass with aromas of peach, mandarin oil, warm bread, red berries and petals, it's full-bodied, deep and vinous, with lovely mid-palate amplitude, terrific concentration and bright girdling acids. In what is quite a tightly wound vintage and from a house whose style is rather understated, this is a dramatic, fleshy wine that concludes with a long, flavorful finish. (WK) 97+ Inner quote mark (9/2021)

97 points Vinous

Outer quote mark The 2008 Brut Rosé Cuvée Elisabeth Salmon explodes from the glass with a mesmerizing array of aromas, flavors and textures. Blood orange, cinnamon, mint and dried flowers. The 2008 is incredibly young, but it is also incredibly tempting. Patience will be rewarded. In the meantime, readers might enjoy adding a few bottles of the stellar 2007 to their cellars, as the nervy, taut 2008 needs time. The 2008 is 55% Pinot Noir (from Aÿ, Verzy, Verzenay and Mareuil) and 45% Chardonnay (from Chouilly, Avize and Cramant), with 9% still wine from Mareuil. It is the first vintage that includes a portion of wines (17%) done in barrel and the first vintage in which the magnums were aged on the cork rather than on crown seal. Dosage is 7 grams per liter. (AG) 97+ Inner quote mark (3/2021)

96 points Wine Enthusiast

Outer quote mark Although a small part of this Champagne was vinified in wood, it is the rich fruit that shows the wine's quality. Touches of toast indicate the approach of maturity, and the wine is now perfectly poised and ready to drink. (RV) Inner quote mark (12/2021)

94 points Wine Spectator

Outer quote mark This crackles with acidity, a fine china-like frame for the ripe and aromatic nectarine and raspberry fruit flavors on display in this expressive sparkling rosé. Hints of red licorice, tar-tinged smoke, star anise and orange peel accent the rich fruit profile, riding the chalky mousse and lingering on the mouthwatering finish. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Disgorged July 2019. (AN) Inner quote mark (11/2021)

K&L Notes

The 2008 Billecart-Salmon “Cuvée Elisabeth” Rosé Champagne is made mostly from Grand Cru vineyards, but it is the 1er Cru that goes into it that makes it so special. The red wine that gives this rosé its color comes from a small plot of 80-year-old Pinot Noir in Mareuil-sur-Aÿ called the Valofroy. This parcel, adjacent to the Clos des Goisses faces due south and directly down at the Marne. The production from this ancient site is the limiting factor for the production of this rare tête de cuvée. The wine is composed of 55% Pinot Noir and 45% Chardonnay and the red wine makes up just about 10% of the total. The raciness of the 2008 vintage has been married perfectly to the richness and power of the old vine Pinot that gives this wine its color. It is a knockout! (Gary Westby, K&L Champagne buyer)

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Product Reviews:

By: Kate Soto | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/7/2021 | Send Email
I adore this wine. One of the stars of the Billecart lineup right now, and we are among the first to get an allocation of it. Mathieu Billecart calls this the "Queen of Rosé." 55% Pinot Noir from 80-year-old vines and 45% Chardonnay. They had a cool spring, and a late harvest producing rich, gorgeous fruit. Fresh cherries and cream and pastry dough on the nose move to buttery, baking spice, fruit tart flavors on the palate. Mathieu says to give it 10 years and the butter and spice will be even more pronounced... if you can wait that long!

By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/28/2021 | Send Email
Cinnamon and I enjoyed this wine on its own at first, but later I made a little wasabi and ponzu tuna mousse to go with it and the spicy, savory food worked very well with the Champagne. It has a very intriguing color with both pink and copper hue, and a gorgeous, miniscule streamer of bubbles. The bouquet has not only dark maraschino cherry and pastry toast, but also a chalk note that foreshadows the finish. In the mouth, the wine has Vosne-Romanée like dark fruit and savor that is seamlessly integrated with a line of refreshing acidity and pure minerality that put most 2008 brut tête de cuvée’s to shame. This wine has a finish that not only goes on, but seems to expand in the mouth. After 13 years, this wine can be enjoyed easily now, but I am convinced that its very best days are still ahead. This wine is for the ages.
Drink from 2021 to 2058

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