Dom PŽrignon 2008
On a June morning at the French Ambassador’s private residence in London, Richard Geoffroy, chef de cave for Champagne Dom Pérignon, presented the long-awaited 2008. This was an historic moment, for on 1 January 2019 he will pass the baton as chef de cave to Vincent Chaperon, with whom he has worked closely since 2005. Geoffroy’s first vintage was the 1990, also presented in its ‘troisième plénitude’ or P3, a powerful wine that has become creamy with maturity while retaining the reductive tension that has become its hallmark – described by Geoffroy as ‘not conserving acidity, more managing radiance’. Also served in its P2 maturity was the 1996, an ‘extraordinary wine that sparkles’, which Geoffroy thinks may well be matched by the 2008 in time. Here are his words to describe the vintage he leaves us with: ‘2008 was dominated by overcast skies and it was the month of September which saved the day. Maturity surpassed all expectations. After a long period of reluctance, it is opening up in complete balance, the slender, pure, athletic character is now also expressed with warmth, the fruit is pronounced and clear, the aromatic persistence remarkably intense.’ I gave it a modest 98/100pts.