Tuesday, April 27, 2010

2004 David Léclapart "L'Artiste", Champagne

100% Chardonnay
Biodynamic made
Aged in half old barriques and half enameled steel tanks.
Vines roughly 37 years of age
Glass: Spiegelau Adina “Red wine”

I recently heard a whisper, from a very reliable source, that 2004 Artiste was not closed anymore. Such information is not to be ignored, as – after tasting the 1999 Vintage some years ago, I started to speculate whether I had to wait a decade before the extremely tight a mineral infected 2004 Artiste would ever come around.

Let me start by confirming that the Champagne has indeed changed and is now to be considered approachable. Whether it stays like this and brings Artiste further and further down its evolution path, I couldn’t say for sure? I would not be a surprised if the flower contracts a few times more, as it almost seems like the destiny, for the very authentic wines of David Léclapart.

When I say approachable – don’t think of Champagne with oxidations patterns, nutty and dark bread flavours starting to come forward – NO, it’s nothing like that. It’s more like a frozen snowball filled with sensational level of minerals, starting to melt. I have often described Artiste’s little brother; Amateur like frozen Evian – and if to stay on the same analogy frequency, Artiste is like a frozen iceberg. The purity is on scale of it’s own and it plays with so high level of energy that ever sniff is like being brought back to life. The fruit has always been filled with greenish apple notes, but here you see the transformation, as the apples are now juicier and even have started to have secondary nuances of peach and pear. On the palate it’s fascinating how the aftertaste is not something you chew on, but particles of crystallized minerals slowly breaking apart. In all essence it makes it incredible sleek and elegant.

If you are the owner of ’04 “L’Artiste” I suggest you open a bottle now, if it turns out to be just a window. You shouldn’t miss such an opportunity.

Beautiful, pure and artistic Champagne – simply just “Artiste”

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