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Elite Wines
Billecart-Salmon Nicolas Francois Grand Cru 2002/06
Region: Champagne
Winery: Champagne Billecart-Salmon
Grapes:
Color: Sparkling
Vintage: 2006
Shelf Talker   Fact Sheet

Description: This exceptional cuvée was created in 1964 as a tribute to the House’s founder. It results from the blending of grands crus from the classified Côte des Blancs vineyards (Chardonnay) and the Montagne de Reims (Pinot Noir). Its vinification, partially in traditional oak casks, underpins the generous character of this fine, elegant and rich wine. Appearance: A lovely colour of sparkling yellow gold veiled in soft golden reflections. This very luminous and intense visual perception gives to the effervescence a rising of fine-cut bubbles. Aroma: All the richness and subtlety of an aromatic curve enhances the maturity of the delicious fruit. Fine notes of praline from lightly roasted dried fruit (almonds, dried dates and grilled chestnuts), refined by the floral and sensory elegance of a touch of infusion (Lime-tree, Verbena). Palate: The balance of a tension controlled by the blossoming of the wine (caramelised stonefruit, light tobacco) and embodied by the line of noble biscuity flavours. A truly unique and personal character showing real vinosity. Tasting: This generous and powerful vintage, characterised by the elegant vinosity of a complex and mature wine, will be served at cellar temperature (11/12°C). It will expose the flavours of a beautiful creamy, roasted poultry or a delicious slice of milk-fed veal with mushrooms.


Reviews

Publication Score Comments
Wine Enthusiast 96 FOR THE 2002 VINTAGE
With its ripe fruits, rich texture and layers of toast, this is a great wine. It shows the quality of the great 2002 vintage brilliantly. It’s complex and concentrated with an array of mature fruit flavors that combine to a structured whole. It will improve with age, so drink this great Champagne through 2025 and perhaps longer. — R.V. (12/1/2013)
James Suckling 98 FOR THE 2002 VINTAGE
A superfine nose with the freshness still very much leading the way. Lemon and fresh wild strawberries, almond milk and a hint of brulée toffee; really lively. The palate has a bright, crunchy and assertive burst of lemon flavor on entry with white cherries and smooth, sherbet-like texture that delivers weight with elegance. Great balance here. Impressive and youthful, super pure and full of power.
Vinous - Antonio Galloni 97 FOR THE 2002 VINTAGE
A mesmerizing, thrilling Champagne, the 2002 Cuvée Nicolas François Billecart is a great example of the vintage at its best. Silky and racy on the palate, yet a bit more restrained than many wines of the year, the Nicolas François Billecart remains vivid and remarkably nuanced. Brioche. apricot jam, wild flowers and honey are some of the many notes that blossom as the Cuvée Nicolas François Billecart shows off its voluptuous personality. The 2002 is 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay.
Decanter Magazine 99 FOR THE 2002 VINTAGE
This vintage has begun to open magnificently since its release, displaying remarkable complexity, yet at every moment clinging to impeccable elegance, coiled focus of malic acid tension and exhilrating chalk mineral texture. Delightful poise and intricate craftsmanship proclaim one of the greatest Billecarts of the modern era. DRINK 2015-2042
Wine Spectator NA FOR THE 2006 VINTAGE
Fine and creamy, this harmonious Champagne layers a firm backbone of bright acidity with a lovely range of orange pâte de fruit, marzipan, lime blossom and toasted brioche notes. Tightly meshed and racy, with a long, lightly spiced finish. Drink now through 2030.
James Suckling 94 FOR THE 2006 VINTAGE
Fresh honey and bright poached apples with dried flowers, cherry pastry and richness that flows to the palate. A ripe array of white peaches, baked cherry pastry and a complex, smooth fleshy build in texture. White peaches and brioche to close. Drinking well now, but it will deliver plenty in the next decade on cork.
The Wine Advocate NA FOR THE 2006 VINTAGE
Created in 1964 as a tribute to the house’s founder, the youngest release is the 2006 Millésime Brut Cuvée Nicolas François, a blend of 60% Pinot Noir from premier and grand crus from the Montagne de Reims and the Grande Vallée de la Marne and 40% Chardonnay from the Côte des Blancs. Almost entirely fermented in stainless steel (only 5% was vinified in oak barrels) and aged for 11 years on the lees, this is a beautifully ripe and rich yet pure champagne with ripe fruit flavors intermixed with chalky notes and brioche/nougat flavors. The palate is intense and concentrated in its rich fruit and substantial depth but also tight, highly elegant and perfectly balanced. The typical finesse of Billecart-Salmon is palatable as well as amazingly pure, with the persistent structure of a great Champagne. The 2006 already drinks dangerously well, but there is no need to hurry, this will go a long way.