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Bruno Paillard Extra Brut N.P.U. Nec Plus Ultra 2002 (750ML)

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Critic Scores, Reviews & Descriptions

97 WA / 96 WS / 95 DE / 94 JS / 18.5+ JR

The 2002 is the sixth edition in the history of the prestige cuvée, following the 1990, ’95, ’96, ’99 and ’03.

The 2002 NPU – Nec Plus Ultra Extra Brut, a 50/50 blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir exclusively from grand cru villages, has a golden color and opens with a beautifully complex and refined bouquet of matured fruit and iodine flavors. Fermented and aged entirely in small oak barrels (pièces) for ten months and then ten years on the lees in bottle, this has lovely oxidation, ripeness and depth. Very pure and fine but wide, highly complex and elegant on the palate, the 2002 NPU combines the famous freshness of the vintage with the complexity of the composition and the bottle aging. The finish is very long, tight, rich and complex but stimulatingly dry, pure and mineral. This is a great Champagne to be enjoyed today or over the next few decades. Total production: 6,200 bottles, plus 300 magnums. The wine I tasted in October 2017 in Hamburg with Bruno Paillard was disgorged in September 2014 and aged another two years in the cellar before it went into the markets. Stephan Reinhardt – The Wine Advocate

Vibrant and expressive, with distinctive aromas and flavors of gingerbread, baked white peach, singed orange peel and crystallized honey, carried on the plush and creamy mousse. An opulent version that’s firm and focused, with beautiful balance and a long, graceful finish. Disgorged September 2014. Drink now through 2029. - A.N. The Wine Spectator

2002 is a highly regarded vintage in Champagne, and it's certainly reflected in the increased intensity compared to the 1999 NPU. It's quite perfumed, with a nougat core surrounded by bright lemon fruit and some floral lift. The mousse is impressively fine, and while the mouthfeel is softer than the 2004, the limey acidity and saline finish ensure this is still a very well-tailored wine. Drinking Window 2019 - 2032 - Decanter

Fascinating, complex and flavorsome style here. Grilled almonds and dried white flowers dominate the nose with pistachios, nougat and lemons. This is Champagne with expressive character. The palate has a seamless textural build and a minerally kick of smooth peach and lemon-curd flavor. Lightly toasted hazelnuts to close. Drink or hold. - James Suckling

Quite marked deep gold. Lots of maturity on the nose. Dense and savoury. Very bold and masculine wine – and amazingly long. Dense and tightly wound. More than a hint of white burgundy. The nose seems more developed than the palate. Tight and dry. But hugely promising. Really vibrates on the palate. Going to be fabulous. Very starry! - Jancis Robinson

The Nec Plus Ultra is is made only in great vintages, only using grand cru grapes, and it is always half Chardonnay, half Pinot Noir. It has spent 11 years in contact with its yeast lees, and, having been disgorged in September 2014, has spent exactly three years resting after the sediment was expelled from the bottle, and a dosage of just 3 g/l was added to the cuvée. It is also made using “exclusively first pressings”, while the wine is fermented and aged in second and third-fill barriques, which are sourced from prominent white wine producers in Graves. In total, N.P.U. always spends at least nine months in barrel, and then a minimum of 10 years ageing on its lees in bottle.


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