Salon Blanc de Blancs Le Mesnil 1997  Front Label
Salon Blanc de Blancs Le Mesnil 1997  Front LabelSalon Blanc de Blancs Le Mesnil 1997  Front Bottle Shot

Salon Blanc de Blancs Le Mesnil 1997

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750ML / 12% ABV
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750ML / 12% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The wine is pearlescent. A pale, lustrous gold with a fine, lively mousse. The nose is complex yet ethereal. Wonderfully refined, it is intriguing and enticing. Its minerality complemented by hints of white flowers, acacia and hawthorn. A salty note enhances aromas of bread crust, brioche and the merest hint of green apple and hazelnut. The palate is quintessentially pure, the very epitomy of balance and restraint. Exuberant on attack the mousse becomes more of a caress whilst bubbles dance playfully on the palate; its delicate allure emulating the sensuous grace of a silk veil at dawn. Mastery character, elegance and bright vitality – Complex indeed.

Choose rare, but very simple dishes to accompany Salon Le Mesnil 1997. Its refined femininity and mysterious pale gold are in harmony with rare, noble produce: the exquisite freshness of the sea, scallop carpaccio, steamed lobster and spring vegetables, an adventurous risotto with strawberries and foie gras or simply a fine Parma ham, an Iberico or the heart of a 36-month matured parmesan.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

A wine that just seems to go from strength to strength is Salon's 1997 Blanc de Blancs Le Mesnil Brut. The Maison kept back large stocks that they have gradually been disgorging over the last half-dozen years—it's still a commercial release and well worth seeking out. From a bottle disgorged in 2020, the wine wafts from the glass with scents of honeycomb, white flowers and orange rind, complemented by hints of burnt marmalade and exotic fruit. Medium to full-bodied, deep and concentrated, it's notably taut and chiseled for the vintage, with racy acids and a beautifully expressive mid-palate. This is really beginning to drink with real grace, and if it doesn't hit quite the same heights as the best bottles of 1996 Salon, I have found the 1997 notably more consistent. I suppose it was picked a touch early, given the botrytis pressure in 1997, but time is being very kind to this wine.

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Salon

Salon

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Salon, France
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Salon is a unique Champagne. All the emphasis in the production of this exceptional wine is on the singular. It was originally the product of one single man, Aimé Salon; from one single region, the Côte de Blancs; from one single cru, Le Mesnil-sur-Oger; from one single grape variety, Chardonnay; and from one single vintage, with no blending whatsoever. Created in 1911 with its first vintage in 1905, Champagne Salon is the creation of Aimé Salon, a champagne connoisseur enchanted then seduced by the terroir of Le Mesnil. After World War I, he was encouraged by his numerous friends to profit more fully from his wine and the house of Salon was created to cater to his new clientele. Headed by Salon until his death in 1943, the house was then left to his nephew. In 1988, Champagne Laurent-Perrier, a family-owned company, became the majority shareholder of Champagne Salon. Today, the house of Salon, along with its ancient neighbor and sister, Champagne Delamotte (the 5th oldest Champagne house, founded in 1760) are directed by one man, Didier Depond.

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Associated with luxury, celebration, and romance, the region, Champagne, is home to the world’s most prized sparkling wine. In order to bear the label, ‘Champagne’, a sparkling wine must originate from this northeastern region of France—called Champagne—and adhere to strict quality standards. Made up of the three towns Reims, Épernay, and Aÿ, it was here that the traditional method of sparkling wine production was both invented and perfected, birthing a winemaking technique as well as a flavor profile that is now emulated worldwide.

Well-drained, limestone and chalky soil defines much of the region, which lend a mineral component to its wines. Champagne’s cold, continental climate promotes ample acidity in its grapes but weather differences from year to year can create significant variation between vintages. While vintage Champagnes are produced in exceptional years, non-vintage cuvées are produced annually from a blend of several years in order to produce Champagnes that maintain a consistent house style.

With nearly negligible exceptions, . These can be blended together or bottled as individual varietal Champagnes, depending on the final style of wine desired. Chardonnay, the only white variety, contributes freshness, elegance, lively acidity and notes of citrus, orchard fruit and white flowers. Pinot Noir and its relative Pinot Meunier, provide the backbone to many blends, adding structure, body and supple red fruit flavors. Wines with a large proportion of Pinot Meunier will be ready to drink earlier, while Pinot Noir contributes to longevity. Whether it is white or rosé, most Champagne is made from a blend of red and white grapes—and uniquely, rosé is often produce by blending together red and white wine. A Champagne made exclusively from Chardonnay will be labeled as ‘blanc de blancs,’ while ones comprised of only red grapes are called ‘blanc de noirs.’

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Representing the topmost expression of a Champagne house, a vintage Champagne is one made from the produce of a single, superior harvest year. Vintage Champagnes account for a mere 5% of total Champagne production and are produced about three times in a decade. Champagne is typically made as a blend of multiple years in order to preserve the house style; these will have non-vintage, or simply, NV on the label. The term, "vintage," as it applies to all wine, simply means a single harvest year.

JIM709688_1997 Item# 709688

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