Wine Spectator 91 points - Hints of roasted walnut and toasted brioche are richly smoky and underscored by flavors of raspberry, lemon confit and green pear in this open-knit Champagne, framed by vivid acidity and a lively bead. Drink now through 2019. -AN
(Nov 15 2014)
Vinous 90 points - (roughly 50% Pinot Noir, 35% Pinot Meunier and 15% Chardonnay; 9 g/l dosage; LAIBG): Light, bright yellow. Musky pear and toasty lees on the nose and in the mouth. Fleshy and open-knit, with a hint of bitter lemon pith adding back-end cut. Finishes on a gently smoky note, with very good cling and focus and a hint of bitter quinine. This must be the best example of this bottling that I’ve had in years, if not decades. In the past the Imperial Brut received a dosage of 12 g/l, but no more; in fact, there’s talk that in the near future it may be dropped down as far as 7 g/l.
Ultimate Beverage Challenge 94 points - Brilliant maize yellow color. Bright egg shell froth and small beads. Rich, sourdough bread, cookie batter, mineral aromas are vibrantly abundant in dry, bake shop bouquet. Toasty, lemony, tart flavors echo the aromatic aspects to a tee. Finishes long, biscuity, velvety, stone dry, classic. Chairman’s Trophy
The NV Imperial is a straightforward, tasty Champagne made in a easygoing style, with good length and a clean, refreshing finish. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2010. (Jun /201)