Disgorged with six grams per liter dosage, the 2007 Brut Cuvée Nicolas François is showing very nicely, offering up aromas of fresh bread, citrus oil, crisp yellow orchard fruit, white flowers, verbena, macadamia nut and hints of biscuity complexity to come. Full-bodied, chiseled but fleshy, its vinous core of fruit cloaks the vintage's brisk acids to achieve real plenitude in a year that's sometimes rather tautly austere. Long and penetrating and complemented by a pretty pinpoint mousse, this is a real success.
This is a laser-guided Champagne with fabulous energy and intensity with a tight palate, racy acidity and super fine phenolics. It goes on and on. Fine bubbles. Light pine and praline character. One for the cellar. 60% pinot noir and 40% chardonnay. Disgorged 19 July, 2020. Wonderful now, but needs time to come together. Better from 2024 onwards.
#3 Top 100 Cellar Selection 2021: This beautiful Champagne is amazingly at its peak. Not too mature, not too young, the wine is in fine balance, showing some nervy edge as well as touches of toast. With a small amount of wood vinification, the wine has extra fullness. Drink through 2025.
The 2007 Brut Cuvée Nicolas François Billecart is positively stellar. Elegant, polished and sophisticated, the 2007 dazzles with effusive aromatics and gorgeous balance. It's not an obvious wine, though, but rather a Champagne built for long, patient cellaring. The 2007 is 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay taken from Mareuil-sur-Aÿ, Ambonnay, Verzenay and Verzy for the Pinots and Chouilly, Avize, Cramant and Mesnil for the Chardonnays. In other words, as good as it gets for villages. The wine was done mostly in tank with about 15% of the lots vinified in oak. Dosage is 6 grams per liter. (Originally published in May 2021)
Just a handful of 6-packs to sell — special occasion bubbly at its finest. FOUR 97-point scores...pretty impressive! We’ve only tasted this wildly complex, brilliant wine twice, and each time it is a huge WHOA type experience. SO much intensity of flowers, subtle fruit and toasty complexity it boggles the mind. The finish alone seems to go on forever...you just know you’re drinking something next-level. Amazing. Please don’t miss!
Roland-Billecart says: “Nicolas François was my great-great-great-great-grandfather.” While this is a mouthful, Mathieu Roland-Billecart is indeed the seventh generation of the family to run the house. The cuvée was first created in 1964, and its 60/40 composition of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay has remained unchanged since then. The Champagnes of Billecart-Salmon have always been a connoisseur’s favourite, but the reputation of one of its top two wines, Cuvée Nicolas François, was sealed in 1999 when the 1959 vintage was declared to be ‘Champagne of the Millennium’. As if that wasn’t enough, the same wine in the 1961 vintage was declared the runner-up!
CHEERS indeed! While it lasts!
PAIRING IDEAS: At this level, we’d have to go caviar. These days, you can actually buy legit buckwheat blinis (unless you want to make yourself, you badass), so just set up a romantic table and go big with beluga, blinis and creme fraiche – minimalist and so luxurious!
MUSIC SUGGESTIONS: Otis Redding's "Champagne and Wine" -- here’s a link. So beautiful.
About the Producer
The champagnes of Maison Billecart-Salmon are above all created thanks to the knowledge of the men who rigorously cultivate an estate of 100 hectares, obtaining grapes from an area totalling 300 hectares across 40 crus of the Champagne region. The majority of the grapes used for vinification come from a radius of 20km around Epernay, where the Grand Crus of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay co-exist, in the ethereal vineyards of the Montagne de Reims, the Vallée de la Marne and the Côte des Blancs.