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The Performance Tables

Champagne Blanc de Noirs, Vintage & Non-vintage

The idea that a blanc de noirs is a big, rich, meaty Champagne came about because Bollinger set the yardstick with its Vielles Vignes Français. That, however, is made from overripe grapes grown on ungrafted vines, thus its size is an anomaly. Needless to say that it usually blasts all opposition for six, but having rocketed in price from a modest £130 to a mere £200 a bottle, it would be a crime if it didn't. Some blanc de noirs can have such finesse that it is hard to imagine that they do not contain a substantial amount of Chardonnay. Serge Mathieu Blanc de Noirs from the Aube comes to mind. There is also the notion that these wines are pure Pinot Noir, whereas many blanc de noirs are blends of both Pinot Noir and Meunier. The following recommendations are all classic blanc de blancs in that they contain only black grapes and the aim has been to produce as colourless a wine as possible from these black-skinned grapes. They are not New World blanc de noirs, which often contain a small percentage of white grapes and vary in colour from copper-tinged to full rosé.

98 Bollinger 1992 Vieilles Vignes Françaises, Blanc de Noirs Brut
88 Mailly Grand Cru NV Blanc de Noirs, Brut
87 Michel Arnould & Fils NV Brut Grand Cru
87 André Clouet NV Grande Réserve Brut
86 Alexandre Bonnet NV Blanc de Noirs, Brut
85 Marie-Noelle Ledru NV Cuvée du Goulté, Brut Grand Cru
84 Pommery NV Wintertime, Blanc de Noirs Brut