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Salon Blanc de Blancs Le Mesnil (in Gift Box) 2004

Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
  • JS98
  • WE98
  • W&S95
  • WS94
12% ABV
  • WE99
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  • WS94
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  • D98
  • WS97
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  • WS94
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  • BH95
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12% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Superb exemplar of the terroir of Mesnil-sur-Oger, exquisite testament to a stunning vintage and one that will stay with us long into the future, Champagne Salon 2004 is a volcano simmering serenely, one that awakens in the glass, nose and palate, ravishing the senses.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
JS 98
James Suckling
2004 Salon weaves together immense complexity with stunning purity and makes instant impact on the nose with fresh-baked pastry and brioche, chalky minerals, fresh white mushrooms, cucumber, lemon curd and striking lemon and lime fruits. The palate has an almost smoky mineral thread while toasty autolytic flavours build and expand through the mid-palate, opening to grapefruit and ripe white-peach flavors, lemon sorbet and very lightly grilled hazelnuts to close. This is an impressively layered Blanc de Blancs in which bright acidity supports the flavorsome, concentrated and fleshy texture in seamless balance. A great Salon that’s very composed and complex in every respect; it’s a classically styled vintage in which this legendary Champagne has excelled. It will be a fascinatingly complex Champagne with further age. Drink now and for 10+ years.
WE 98
Wine Enthusiast
Salon's releases are rare and signify a great vintage—the last release was the 2002. Coming from grand cru vineyards in Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, this 2004 is complex and concentrated, capturing the essence of Chardonnay in Champagne. Intense minerality and ripe apple and citrus fruits accompany the purity and crisp texture that are part of its ability to age. The wine can continue for many years, certainly to 2025 and beyond.
W&S 95
Wine & Spirits
Salon is chardonnay from 20 parcels in Le Mesnil, all the original blocks chosen by Aime Salon with his first vintage in 1905. This latest vintage is quiet at first, its sophisticated layering of flavors opening over the course of several days. With air, this tastes like a Puligny with bubbles, its vinous character portrayed in scents of white flowers, chamomile, peaches, kimquates and lemongrass, all of that intensity of flavor shepherded by the chalky direction of limestone acidity. Decant it if you open the wine now; this is structured to age for decades.
WS 94
Wine Spectator
This elegant Champagne features ripe, up-front aromas and flavors of dried apricot, crystallized honey and candied kumquat, giving way on the creamy palate to more subtle notes of raw almond, fleur de sel and star anise. Mouthwatering, with a chalky underpinning and a lovely, satiny finish. Drink now through 2026.
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Salon
Salon, Champagne, France
Image of winery
Situated in Le Mesnil-sur-Oger in the Côte des Blancs, the House of Salon produces only one Champagne, the Cuvée "S". This Champagne comes from a 2.5-acre vineyard owned by Salon (Le Jardin de Salon, or "Salon's Garden") and from 19 smaller parcels representing 22.5 acres of vineyards in Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, all chosen by founder Eugène-Aimé Salon early in the 20th century. There have been no changes to the methods and principles of making Champagne Salon that he laid down over a century ago, and that is certainly a testament to Salon's judgment and discrimination.

Champagne

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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, three varieties are permitted for use in Champagne: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier. 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.’

Champagne & Sparkling

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Equal parts festive and food-friendly, sparkling wine is beloved for its lively bubbles and appealing aesthetics. Though it is often thought of as something to be reserved for celebrations, sparkling wine can be enjoyed on any occasion—and might just make the regular ones feel a bit more special. Sparkling wine is made throughout the world, but can only be called “Champagne” if it comes from the Champagne region of France. Other regions have their own specialties, like Prosecco in Italy and Cava in Spain. Sweet or dry, white or rosé (or even red!), lightly fizzy or fully sparkling, there is a style of bubbly wine to suit every palate.

The bubbles in sparkling wine are formed when the base wine undergoes a secondary fermentation, trapping carbon dioxide inside the bottle or fermentation vessel. Champagne, Cava and many other sparkling wines (particularly in the New World) are made using the “traditional method,” in which the second fermentation takes place inside the bottle. With this method, dead yeast cells remain in contact with the wine during bottle aging, giving it a creamy mouthful and toasty flavors. For Prosecco, the carbonation process occurs in a stainless steel tank to preserve the fresh fruity and floral aromas preferred for this style of wine.

VBRSAL052304_2004 Item# 167335