92 points Wine Spectator: Very graceful, with lovely harmony and detailed texture. Lightly creamy, offering a subtle blend of Fuji apple, hazelnut, lemon pound cake and smoke flavors, with vibrant, mouthwatering acidity. Disgorged February 2011. Drink now through 2018.
55% Pinot Noir, 15% Pinot Meunier and 30% Chardonnay. Philipponnat has been undergoing an extraordinary transformation since acquired by the Bruno Paillard group in 1998. The previous owners had run the label into the ground but under the guiding hand of the very talented Charles Philipponnat we have witnessed are return to brilliance. This is a very easy, fresh, fruity style with elegance, charm and character.
The house of Philipponnat is a neighbor of Billecart-Salmon in Mareuil sur Ay in the heart of Champagne. This wine is a big, toasty, yeasty wine made mostly from black fruit. It is composed of 45% Pinot Noir, 35% Chardonnay and 20% Meunier from vineyards on the Mountain of Reims, the Côtes de Blancs and the Valley of the Marne. They use 25% reserve wine, which is kept in a Solera and accounts for a lot of the complexity and richness in the wine.
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.