Nice squeezed lemon and diluted gold color. On the nose this was Puligny Montrachet - like with salted butter and lemon cream. Over time I like how the taste fluctuated from salted oranges to sweeter tones and was pleasurable to drink with a full meal because of the intensity and power, characteristic of the 1996 vintage.
My third bottle and everyone consistent with the other and one of the best Champagnes I have every had bar none. Previous notes apply. Sorry, once again drank for my 65th at Fortaleza do Guincho in Portugal so more interested in the food, my beautiful wife and great Champange and 89 Baron so I didn't take copius notes. In fact not one. But between the two wines it was a great birthday and even greater wine and food experience.
A Memorable Seaside Dinner in Corsica (Porticcio, Corsica): Bright, vibrant and compelling, with a clean saline nose and loads of flavor. The lemon notes dominate on the front palate, and the persistence is impressive. I think this is drinking at peak right now, with no hint of oxidation and impressive depth.
The 96 Oeno is finally living up to its pedigree. Its always been very good, but given the vintage/producer it should be great. Recent bottles have been superb, and this vintage of Oeno is really coming into its own.
Still an infant but very enjoyable now with sharp apple and charming mineral in the bouquet which resemble to a fine puligny. On the other hand, the palate is still short from a maestro at this moment which I reckon times will render it into a master piece. Will try another one in 2 or 3 years.
Yeasty, sweaty nose of sourdough and sour cream, with hints of spring onion and melon. Palate is very dry, very crisp, and very mineral, with a long, firm spine of acidity. Shows only hints of fruit flavour: fresh apple, brown apple, and lemon, with yeasty notes of sourdough and sweat.
Oenothèque differs from the regular Dom Pérignon Brut in that bottles are aged on the cork, rather than on crown-seals, it also receives a lower dosage following disgorgement. As such this is a flawless Oenothèque. It reminds me of Michelangelo's Davide in all that it communicates—timeless, there is lightness of form and yet the gravity of pure stone, such is the graceful, masculine power this Champagne expresses. Heady and classic aromas of wet shell, brioche, smoke and lemon zest lead into a wine that is subtly creamy on the palate, then coursing with minerality and acidic tension, like muscle under flesh.
I find many of these bottles distinguished by a pleasing initial funk and light petrol on the nose. Honeysuckle, white flower, white and yellow fruits on the palate. This wine can take some time to open up with light yeasty notes and subtle butterscotch coming out on the backpalate with the progression of time and temperature. This wine will clearly benefit from more time.
My Birthday Dinner (Pierre Restaurant, Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Central, Hong Kong): Another fantastic showing for this perennial favourite........ it is currently in a gorgeous equilibrium between richness of maturing nose and body and the classic younger zingy freshness that the Oenotheque bottling adds. Drank as an opener to my birthday dinner......drank too quickly to fully contemplate, which would have yielded it a higher score. Utterly gorgeous.
Burg Dinner with Friends (Formento's - Chicago IL): Lots of ripe apple aroma and flavor with some yeasty, toasted brioche throughout. Slightly nutty background notes. Very good power everywhere, and the ripe fruit is nicely balanced with sneaky amount of acidity that comes through nicely on finish.
Color amarillo bien intenso con suaves irisaciones doradas, fina burbuja que no llega a formar corona, brillante y extremadamente limpio. Inmensa nariz con unos aromas muy sensuales de bollería recién orneada, pan tostado y recién sacado del horno, harina caliente, mermeladas de fruta blanca y de hueso (ciruelas verdes), orejones frescos y carnosos, curiosa sensación de rebozado de croquetas (y no pongo otras cosas porque sino resultaría una nota de cata un poco extravagante), frutos secos sin pelar (almendras y avellanas), miel seca, recuerdos de mantequilla fresca, galletas dulzonas algo calientes, suave toque de cera caliente, hierbas del monte secas, flores blancas con un suave fondo mineral que agranda el conjunto y lo magnifica. Explosiva entrada en boca con un inicio excelente y un recorrido espectacular en el que discurre una multitud de sensaciones que cabe discernir poco a poco, un carbónico fino y muy elegante que se integra de maravilla, fruta bien madura con toques de fruta blanca y matices de fruta roja escarchada, notables tostados que se derivan en el pan y los frutos secos, excelente acidez, mantequilla y crema cítrica, con mucho volumen y cuerpo, muy amplio y profundo, de notable intensidad, seductora textura, sedoso y elegante, magnífica persistencia. Final largo, postgusto de fruta madura y miel y retronasal ahumado.
More information: www.elvi.net/2013/09/25/dom-perignon-brut-oenotheque-1996/
Holiday dinner with Washington DC Winos (Ripple Restaurant in Washington D.C.): If you love Champagne and have the budget, seek this out. Clear aspect, very fine bubbles. Subtle yet echoing and deep aromatics reflecting biscuit and toast but so finely matched by lively citrus aromas all followed through on the palate which began subtle but expanded to a full bodied aspect, with a silky light creamy texture - those fine bubbles tickling the palate - and a precise laser like focus from the vintage's excellent acidity leading to a long echoing finish. This wine was only recently released, disgorged after 12 years in bottle and has upside "point potential" for all you point chasers. Worthy of further aging in the cellar.
Golden yellow, crystal clear with fine bubbles. Still very youthful. Charred oak, toast, bourbon, brioche, and yeast on the nose. Ripe lemon with peel, lemon curd, creme brulee, and butter on the palate. Mouth-wateringly high in acid.
If I had another bottle I would wait 10 more years to drink it as it clearly has the structure to age well and I believe it will benefit with age.
This wine needed a lot of time to show up. In the beginning it was an acid monster, full of brioche and.. well acid. But at the end of the night it really came out of its shell, a hugely powerful dense champagne with brilliant intensity. Awesome awesome wine with just so much life ahead of it.
In contrast to the regular cuvée this was lighter in color, and with much more prominent acidity. Nice brioche and tart apple. I agree with other posters that at this stage, I prefer the regular 96 Dom.
Jeebus, what a development with airing! Started out at a "measly" 91+ with the acidity quite up front and lemon/lime notes and a bit of toffee-development but then developed into the most beautiful freshly ground coffee note and fleshed out considerably as it sat in the glass. Not convinced I prefer this to 'Cuvée Normale' but this puppy is certainly a great Champagne with years of positive evolution expected ahead of it.
Chicago Burgundy Geek Dinner (Boka - Chicago IL): Cross-section of apples on nose and palate with plenty of concentration and character of rich, toasted brioche. Much like previous bottles, this is a wine I always enjoy, just never as much as the "regular" Dom Perignon 1996.
I disliked the '96 Oeno for the first 2 years after release. But then it finally began to drink and I have been a fan ever since. Unfortunately, this bottle had just a touch of cork on it, which was just enough to make it undrinkable for me.
For a champagne this still needs to breathe to understand the meaning of Dom From beginning to end extremely wonderful flavors but after an hour or so the minerality can come out Really wonderful glass of champagne
The Full Monty: Expansive and open for business. Vanilla, floral, peach, bready and lightly nutty. The fruit purity is delicious and a wave of acidity pierces through and give it superb length. Compelling Champagne.
Rockstar Champagne... like, all of them (E&R Wine Shop, Portland OR): Most certainly smells like Dom... which is admittedly a house style I'm not to keen on, and this Oenothèque is no different. The nose is very expressive and smells of rancid oak. Luscious but funky and totally in your face. Better on the palate, which is luscious, but there's still a strong wood note that's a little bitter and harsh. Odd lingering notes of wood funk, spice, and bitterness. Rich minerality, but not pleasant.
Dinner at Elite (Elite Chinese Restaurant - Los Angeles, CA): About the same as the bottle I had a couple weeks earlier. Big and brawny, this is a powerhouse. Tons of dense, creamy, toasty, lemon and apple tones with a very firm bubble. I came back to this later in the night and the firmness had broken down a bit, but this is a bottle that'll reward patience.
Dinner at Paris Club (Paris Club - Chicago, IL): Pop and pour. Lots of power and refinement with layers of sweet fruit, and florals. Tons of energy, weight, and balance. An incredibly young champagne that packs the power, balance, elegance to transform into something truly special with time.
Mostly Northern Rhone dinner (The Grill Room at Capella Hotel Georgetown): I have always loved the regular bottling of the 96 Dom and have often preferred to the Oeno. However this has to be the best example to date. Smoke and mineral, Chevalier Motrachet like fresh white fruits, lemon, oyster shell and fresh white pepper. Quite airy and delicate yet intense palate, strong presence of mineral, just the perfect amount of acidity and long seamless finish. Although still very youthful, incredibly hedonistic. Really reminds me a great Chevalier Montrachet with very vinous nose.
I know the DP haters won't agree but Incredible, incredible, indcredible. Insanely one of the best champagnes I have ever had. I don't often feel this way but it was worth the price. At dinner with my fiance who was in NYC for first time in her life. Bachannol in NYC, new. Food incredible and outstanding, highly recommend, wine better. MUST TRY if in NYC. Sorry not more complete notes.
Sorry for such a late edit. DCWINO I think hit the nail on the head regarding the flavor profile.
BYOB dinner with Jamie Pollack (Bourbon Steak): Very youthful, delicate and decadent. This is a lyric tenor where the 96 regular is a baritone. Fresh citric yellow fruits, lemon crud, a hint of pear, honey, a mature Chablis like oyster shell and mineral. Lovely spring like refreshing mouthfeel, nicely integrated acidity and lovely seamless mineral finish.
This is a young wine that is not yet showing what it has to offer. From the notes there is a good amount of controversy surrounding it but with time it will be amazing. Just hold on to it for another 10 years! (per se)
Wines that Charles loves (Cafe Pyrenees): Gorgeous nose is bready with deep floral and baked apple notes. Palate is young and vibrant with plenty of racy acidity. Gets better and better with air. Long, penetrating finish.
Drunk at Xmas with the family. Superb. Gold coloured with fine bubbles. Yeast on the nose with a richness of flavour that made 'standard' Dom seem almost ordinary. Would love to have another bottles for 5 years time.
Seeing stars at the Abbey in Hautvillers, just outside Epernay (Abbey de Hautvillers, near Epernay): Simply magnificent. I bought a six pack after tasting this, it was that good, offering everything anyone would want from great Champagne: vibrancy, tension, a panorama of aromas and flavors and a more intense brioche like creamy texture coming from the long contact with the lees in bottle. The bottle had been disgorged in 2008. It exuded fresh notes of grapefruit and lemon but with mocha, and superb precision and focus, with fine and vibrant bubbles balancing the creamy texture. You could almost drink it now, but it needs time in glass to soften its coiled up sensation, and would be better to save for a few years ideally.
I thought this was fantastic and one of my favorite champagnes of the afternoon. Color was pale yellow, nice fine mousse. Very fresh on the nose and palate. Tropical fruits galore with yeasty notes. I agree with the laser like focus on this wine.
Golden. V fine bubbles. Nutty and savoury brioche on nose. Powerful on palate. Rich. Crisp lemony citrus notes. Subtle acidity. Slightly smoky. Overall this was a lovely bottle. Would be interesting to compare to the regular 96.
Far more approachable to me on this evening than the regular 96 DP. Slightly smoky nose with hints of what I term cold rolled steel. I get a similar note in the Dauvissat Preuses if that means anything to anyone?! Really, deep, perfectly balance and almost regal. Didn't budge an inch.
Dom Perignon @ Medlar: A touch more reductive on the nose than the straight 96. This seems more vibrant on the nose and on the attack, but is a little disjointed and lacks something in the middle currently. Doesn't flow seamlessly from start to finish as the straight 96 does. Some preferred it more. ****
The 1996 Moët & Chandon Champagne Cuvée Dom Pérignon Oenothèque medium (-) bright straw in colour with an intense nose of fresh tropical fruits (pineapples), green apples, lemon zest with overtones of slight sunflower oil, fresh yellow flowers and good minerality. There's a hint of breadiness as well (which is not too consistent with other notes here, and I'm beginning to suspect a bottle variation on this one). On the palate, an initial entry of sunflower oil backed up with lemon zest and fresh crunchy green apples. Minerality strings through the palate from start to end with good backbone of fruit and slight floral notes.
Rather linear but superb intense finish. Impeccable laser-like focus with vibrant and bright fruit flavours along the middle of the palate. Good weight on the finish with a nice underlying salinity. Should have waited a little longer for it to be more expressive. Got some weight, but still a little tight when tasted. Surprisingly fresh and vibrant, years ahead still for sure. Some decanting will do the job if uncorked today. (94-96)
The mouthfeel in this champagne is what will stay with us for ever. So vibrant, elegant yet so refined and balanced. Almost a fragile giant. A bit too young in our mind to warrant an oenothque but still a magnificent bottle true to what great Dom needs to be all about, focused, precise and as memorable as the moon landings were to a 10 year old. 96-97 and really on the young side, but still great.
Stunning wine with tons of depth. Showing nice acid on the entry, with distinct minerality in the mid palate and finish. Tons of nuttiness and yeast throughout the experience. Lovely wine that should persist and improve for years to come.
Defreakinglightful. Just full of life and energy on the palate. The wine is so bright and just bursting with citrus and acidity. Way more youth than the one I had last year as the concentration of fruit was so forward and aggressive. Really liked it
Disgorged in 2008 and pop and pour. This started firm and rather subdued. As the bottle warmed on the table it became an awesome drink. This bottle is certainly more firm and less fruit forward than the regular 1996. But when it landed I was struck by white earth minerals, sand, silica flour, glass, oyster shell and limestone. Again, as it warmed the fruit began to show on the nose and in the mouth. There were aromas of dry Riesling residue, stone fruits, and hints of lemon. In the mouth it was zippy and fresh with lemon, and bitter stone fruit, and lemon cream, tied together by kind of a citrus/saline perception that was all the rage to my senses. The last sip was the best and I lament not letting this one get even more air. These should age well and be good for quite a while.
Elegantare frukt än Krug GC och Egly-Ouriet 2002 (dracks parallellt med dessa). Mer mognad märks också tydligt. Mer fokus på sekundära dofter snarare än frukten: rostat, nötter, svamp och lite koskitskänsla (på ett positivt vis - hur märkligt det än låter) med ordentlig rökig mineralitet.. Orkade dock inte leverera lika länge (med högre värme och utan mousse) som Krugen.
Angela's Belated Birthday Dinner (Crown Wine Cellars, 18 Deep Water Bay Drive, Shouson Hill, Hong Kong): Drank over 6 hours, including 5 hours removed from the ice bucket. Colour is very light straw gold. Nose is BAM!..... absolutely beautiful, full, fresh-baked French baguettes, lemon sherbert boiled sweets from my childhood, tons of other various mineral notes, complex but most significantly this is just very integrated and complete. Palate is light honeysuckle, toffee boiled sweets from my childhood, hints of hazelnuts, lots of minerality and a slight element of honeycomb on the back end. Quite sharp acidity and also slightly burningly alcoholic when straight from the ice bucket but both toned down as it slowly moved towards cool room temperature and the hazel nut element became more prominent. I would give this 97 points for the nose, which was still going strong in a glass put aside for 4 hours. 95-96. Everyone's wine of the night....this really does transport you somewhere.
Alcohol :: 12.5% Dosage: 5g. Definitely a treat to have this. I thought this would be dominated by the solid structure and acid from the 1996 vintage but I was wrong. This is showing superbly well and everyone in the room get hooked immediately. Extraordinary focus, depth and complex with touch of oxidative note that blossom from the glass along with chrysanthemum, lily, hazelnut and intense yellow fruits. On the palate this is all about harmony. Impeccable balance between the vivid acid core and seductive fruits. Complex layer of flavors continue to expand and linger on the palate effortlessly. Palate staining intensity yet remains so elegance, lively and weightless. The grip at the finished is firm but no forceful, with complex salinity and sweet juiciness lingering. Bravo.
Nose shows strong savoury notes (sourdough, grilled nuts) over mostly red fruit (cranberry, red apple). Palate is austere and pallid, despite a strong, tight spine of acidity. The typical Chardonnay note of green apple is present but, unusually for a Champagne, there is also a Pinot Noir red cherry note. Impeccable structure; likely has a long life ahead of it.
Moet Hennessey USA tasting (The Graham Georgetown): Superb stuff, but you already knew that. It's interesting how this Œothèque version of the '96 takes the classic Dom profile and puts it in an even more bright, bracing, and precise package -- Champagne cut like diamonds -- and consequently, I think, probably a few years behind in the maturity curve than the regular '96 has been in terms of its freshness, even as it's picked up the typical flint-and-gunmetal mineral element that these usually need a few years of bottle age to develop. The aromatics on this are just soaring, a no-doubter as soon as you pass your nose in the vicinity of the glass that this is going to be wide-open and expressive, and it is.
Moët Portfolio Tasting (Graham Georgetown Hotel - Washington, DC): Intoxicating aromas of lemon cake, buttered croissant, yellow apple, honeydew, dried white flowers... and the aromas just keep going. Rich on the palate, with green apple and melon fruit, buttered toast and dried honey, but this wine maintains so much focus and precision. The minerality in this wine is astounding, same goes for the acid, which never ceases. Such beautifully dramatic tension between the lean and rich aspects. Chef de Caves Richard Geoffroy has made a masterpiece with this wine. If I had a bottle of this, I'd put it down with a cellar tag that reads "Do not open until apocalypse."
This is so good. Typical Dom Perignon nose with its roasted coffee and sweet berries. This is the best oenteque I have ever had I think. It is actually better than the normal vintage was I think. I will open one of them still stocked in my cellar to see how they are developing. Top champagne!!!
Brilliant. Longest finish I have ever experienced on a champagne. Very fruit forward, but still maintains balance and elegance. More mousse and yeast on day two. Eclipses the regular bottling of 96 by just a hair. A superb wine to celebrate our new house!
Chú Xī (除夕) Dinner at Home for Chinese New Year (Our House, Hong Kong): What a lovely surprise......I thought it was Dom Perignon 2002 I had at home when our best friends arrived for dinner but I'd forgotten that it was an Oenotheque 1996 I'd pulled from the cellar for Christmas but hadn't opened. It couldn't have been better company to share the fortune with....especially as Chinese New Year drew to a close.
Light green-gold colour. Incredible nose.....smoky bacon, brown toasted bread, ozone in spades, lemon zest. The ozone nose is so typical of an oenotheque. Palate is really zesty, alive, effervescence with really deep, rich mesmerising toastiness and depth. Impressive resonance. Really silence-creating, which is the highest accolade I can give to a wine. Even 5 hours after opening and after our guests had gone, the zestiness of the palate is still as zippy as ever. So toasty and with a salinity and Epsom Salts palate that is so memorable. Close to perfect...and with the time ahead of it to reach my paradigm of absolute perfection, which is the DP Oenotheque 1971.
The sky is the limit here and having tasted oenotheque's back to the 70's this has the stuffing and vitality to age and evolve. We wonder if this was released a bit ahead of its time and we look forward to future releases of this amazing vintage.
For what it can achieve it is a bit backward and restrained at this stage and we would point to the regular bottling for the moment and let this baby sleep and evolve into something spectacular. Don't get us wrong we did love it though. 94 at the moment but could well reach 100 as it matures.
The 1996 Dom Perignon Oenotheque is coming along very nicely and seems to have officially started to enter its drinking window. In fact, this was probably the best bottle of Dom Perignon that I have ever had. It had some rich citrus and spice aromas on the nose. On the palate it immediately showed dark minerals, limestone, bright citrus, honeysuckle, fresh baked bread, allspice, almonds, a slight grassy flavor, and a lovely creaminess. The champagne also felt light on its feet thanks to the bright acidity that is now well integrated with the other components. This Oenotheque also seemed to have a bit more precision and focus than the original release of the 1996 Dom Perignon.
It is clear that the 1996 Oenotheque will continue to improve with time and will have an extremely long life. I was considering giving this more than 95 points, but for me, I still like the style of champagnes from the likes of Bollinger, Salon, and Krug a bit more than the style of Dom Perignon. So my score reflects my stylistic preference more than anything else. But if you like the DP style, then this is a can't miss champagne.
Eighth Annual White Truffle Dinner (Chez Weber - Chicago IL): Served alongside the DP 1996, this was very similar with plenty of ripe apple, just a bit more bready and yeasty. Perhaps a bit larger and fatter, but it came across as a bit more backward. I preferred the "regular" bottling to the Oenothèque, while the rest of the table was about evenly divided.
White Truffle Dinner at Yann's. (Yann's Place, New York, NY): Light gold. Really on. Nose of tart red apple, lemon, butter and brioche, creamy yet lively, a beautiful contradiction. Incredibly bright and acidic on the palate: lemon, but with a creaminess that makes you swoon. Brioche, white chocolate, white flowers, minerals and lemon curd. Lemon finish. Still young. Nose - 5.5/6, Palate - 6/6, Finish - 5/6, Je Ne Sais Quoi - 1.5/2 = 18/20.
Round Table dinner at Jake's (NYC): Tough act to follow the Salon, but this is very impressive in its own right. Richly fruited and framed by layers of autolytic bready, doughy and toasty elements, wonderfully balanced and really enjoyable.
Dom Pérignon Masterclass with Richard Geoffroy at Decanter Fine Wine Experience (Landmark Hotel, London): Appearance: bright yellow, slightly more yellow than the 2002. Nose: powerful toasted notes with toasted hazelnuts, cocoa powder, citrus, a hint of herbal notes, developed notes with some pine tree needles and resin, spice. It “sings more in a bass voice” than 02 or 03, and hints at oak barrel or other wood notes. Palate: noticeable minerality, citrus, some apple, a hint of spice, some resion, grapefruit bitterness, a hint of tannic impression on the mid-palate and in the aftertaste. The aftertaste is extremely long with mineral and citrus notes. Overall impression: not a heavyweight compared to 2002 and 2003. Still young, more developed in the nose than on the palate, but the palate is also reasonably accessible. 94+ p.
Dom Perignon Masterclass, with Richard Geoffroy (Decanter FWE, The Landmark hotel, London): Bright, luminous light golden in colour. Quite intense nose which continues to evolve in the glass. Nose is starting to show age evolution, light toast, light yeasty notes, ripe fruit notes. On the palate it is vibrant, focussed yet with a silky texture. Never dries out. Very harmonious wine with good acidity and more mineral than fruity. Just about entering its drinking window and has a great future ahead of it and can last another 20-30years easily.94 To quote RG, welcome to Dom Perignon!
DOM PERIGNON tasting (Rotterdam, Netherlands): In the month before grapepicking 16 september, it was as much the spells of hot weather as the influence of north-easterly winds that led to the original maturity of the vintage.( disgorging date 2008 ) Magnificent verdant gold color, on the nose very young and fresh with soft minerals, the palate is tense, profound and intense, acidity on the high side but not extreme, some complex aromas of candied citrus, toast and smoke, lots of energy and power, a great lingering aromatic finish. A great Oenotheque and stil very youmg!
Tight. Yeasty and nutty. Still very young. Had it side by side with the standard 96 and you could really tell the difference. Even the color ismore pale. Great Champagne. Tigher and faster bubbles racing to the top. This will be amazing in 5-10 years. At the moment, standard one more approachable.
Zachys Pre-Auction Dinner (Bar Boulud, NY): Initially light but gained rapidly in the glass. Aromas of lemon, flowers, curd. On the balance snappy at first but really blossomed with tropical fruit and nicely balanced acidity. Great.
In the glass the color was light gold. A nose of toast and brioche, apples. Light to medium bodied with a tight bead. Primary fruit flavours of green apples, some ginger, sooem nuttiness. Good acidty to balance verything out. Still very tight and focused at the moment. You could drink now but id wait another 5 years.
What a remarkable, complex and fascinating Champagne. One of the best of this outstanding vintage, it is multi-faceted and highly rewarding. Others have noted a strong smoke character, Jancis calls it 'struck matches', and that it has in abundance, yet in a complex and interesting way. Lemon, toast, yeast and brioche are other notes that play on the nose and palate in seemingly endless variation. Not as dry or austere as one would suspect, knowing that the Oenothèque cuvée differs from standard Dom Pérignon by its lower dosage (in addition to being aged on the cork). Disgorged in 2008, it is just coming into its drinkability window, but has enough acidity to comfortably carry it through another 20 years or more. Very complex, beautifully crafted and unique, truly a magnificent Champagne and a delight to drink. Superb.
Good, but not great. Grass and herbs, giving way to yeast, chalk,. Acidic (but not as much as some other DPs) with good breadth and length. Improved noticeably in the large glasses we drank this from. I would hold off drinking this for 10 years. Buy? No, although wife is a fan.
Birthday Wines for Mr. Wei at Chateau De Husky; 6/29/2012-7/2/2012: Very interesting champagne. The nose was a bit off putting as the bready nutty flavor was so powerful that it took me by surprise. I expected a more high toned yellow fruit to lead the way on the nose. But on the palate the wine was full and lush and coats every receptor with a creamy chalk and bright explosive citrus fruit. Compared to the early releases of the 96 Dom (normal bottling) this doesn't have the precision of acid but not in a bad way as I've yet to have a 96 Dom that is an expansive on the palate as the Oenotheque is.
Admittedly my judgment over this bottle may be biased: my girl agreed to marry me and this is what we drank to celebrate. That said, as someone who really likes DP, this just takes it up to 11. Beautiful floral and citrus nose, wonderful mouthfeel and terrific finish. Went well with the diverse tasting menu at Auberge Carmel, and by itself.
Light golden color, a tad darker than the 03 drunk side by side. Nose of fresh hazelnuts and peachy tone. Very fresh and dry, overall very sharp and tight but with lots of potential, the normal 96 Dom is in a much better place to drink now, won't touch this for at least a few years.
Dom Perignon Dinner (NAHA - Chicago IL): Similar to the Dom Perignon 1996 in the next glass, but larger scaled and breadier, less citrus-driven and precise. Some preferred this Oenothèque tonight, which was quite wonderful, but I frankly prefer the sensational "regular" 1966 cuvee.
nose; lemon, smoke, minerals, and chalk. palate; baked bread, green apples, pears, and red berries. medium plus acidity. full bodied. 60 plus second finish. my first oenotheque. no doubt the best dom perignon I have drank. opened to celebrate the birth of my first nephew. a very special day in my life. unforgettable!
A beautiful wine. Good green apple and bright citrus, a little bit of yeast, some minerals/chalk and a medium long finish. What makes this wine really good is its balance and precision. Like a Swiss watch, nothing extra, nothing overbearing the others, everything moving in perfect concert. It actually stopped some conversations as the wine danced in people’s mouths. Not as sumptuous as the Bruno Paillard 1996 that we drank alongside it, but gorgeous in its own right.
The 97 Cult cab/Meritage dinner at RIS in DC: This is so fresh, limestone, cooper, white flowers, sea salt, sea breeze and etc. The palate is citric and steely and displays excellent concentration and birth acidity. A wonderful young champagnes that is drinking beautifully.
Dom Perignon Dinner (2002,1996,2000 Rose,1971) (Man Wah Restaurant, Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Hong Kong): Deep green-gold, bright, sharp colour. Little mousse as it was served in a wine glass. Nose is a notch up from the 1996 Dom Perignon drank in parallel with it......amazing purity (I underlined this word in my notes) and precision, like a really sharply-focussed photo of a rockface.....intense hand-crushed lightly roasted whole lemons with almost no tones of yeast or brioche. Weightless, like the nose of a young Montrachet. Palate has the same marked effervescence of Alka Seltzer as the standard Dom Perignon 1996.....mouthwateringly fresh and vibrant.....absolutely stunning....such lightness but sabre-sharp tension....saline...incredibly salivative....lemons, lemons, lemons....gorgeous......heady and very resonant on the finale. This has decades ahead of it but it already has me totally captivated. Gosh.... I don't think champagne gets much better than this...erm, until we were served the Dom Perignon Oenotheque 1971.
I was expecting great things from the 1996 Dom Oenothque and it mostly delivered. To me this will likely continue to evolve and improve for the next 20 years, but is already starting to enter its drinking window. The thing that struck me the most about this bottle was the perfect balance and delicateness that it displayed. It was also remarkably light and seemed lighter on its feet than most regular vintage Dom Perignon's (maybe a result of the lower dosage in the Oenotheque bottlings). The most apparent flavors included citrus, light red apple and some yeast. Even though I was not totally blown away, this was a very good champagne. Not worth its price in my opinion, but that might change in another decade or so if this continues to improve.
Chablis dinner, plus more (GT Fish & Oyster - Chicago IL): Starts as I expected from a 1996 Chardonnay-based Champagne, with intensity and lots of big fruit. Last time I had this, I preferred the 1996 regular DP cuvee tasting alongside. Interestingly, this picked up power, textures and complexity with more time in glass, and somehow actually started seeming more bright and fresh.
Incredible nose of tropical fruits and reach complex layers. The bubbles were delicate and almost completely disappeared in the glass after some time. This has a beautiful gold color. Palate was nearly perfect. So rich but live and flowing. Acidity was very good sustaining well the fruit. Flavor profile of tropical fruits, butter scotch, and once the effervescence was gone this really tasted like an aged Grand Cru Chablis. Long finish, simply amazing!
Had this at a dinner tasting in TST. This was the opening champagne. This was a elegant and complex champagne. I enjoyed the depth and this really had a great freshness and really tasted very young. This will be much better in 20 years
Giallo tendente al dorato.Parte ridotto su note troppo banali di tostatura e caffè, poi con il passare dei minuti si apre , note floreali e gesso, agrumi dal lime al mandarino , zucchero filato , poi la frutta gialla albicocca disidrata, melone giallo. Bocca fine , elegante , con una bellissima acidità , una leggera punta di ossidazione , lungo finale con ritorni di anice .
Piedmont Dinner (Barbetta): What great stuff. This is the best showing of '96 Dom I've experienced since the original release came out; I guess the later disgorgement of the Oenothèque program has managed to reopen the wine somewhat. It tastes essentially the same way I remember the regular '96 (with the chardonnay parts of the flavor spectrum more dominant than the norm for DP) but leaner and more bracing, I guess due to the lower dosage. But the most remarkable thing about it is its sense of delineation. Tough to explain the sensation but as soon as you take a sip it seems to carve out a space for itself and you feel the structural borders before it fills them in with flavor... then comes the rush of bracing lemony/pineapply fruit spackled with metal shavings and other vivid mineral elements.
This vintage of Oeno gets better each time I have it. I underrated it initially (must have been an off night, or an off bottle), but each time since its impressed. Tonight it went head to head with 75 Oeno, and held its own (age adjusted). Reloaded twice this week - suggest folks buy at its relatively reasonable current price point as this will likely move up significantly.
I have not tried the "regular" (first plenitude) '96 in a while so I can't directly compare them, but this second plenitude version, disgorged in 2008, is a stunner. Flamboyant in DP terms, the lusty aroma of ripe melon and fresh baked white bread reaches you well before the flute even comes close to your nose. Open, friendly flavors with no undue acidity makes this absolutely delicious right now. Can it age for decades?