"A potential legend in the making" -2009 Philipponnat Les Cintres

Posted by Ian McFadden

The Clos des Goisses vineyard is without equal in Champagne. Les Cintres is from a prime, steep parcel in the middle of Goisses.

In short, Les Cintres is an old vine sweet spot of Clos des Goisses. 

As William Kelley's quote above makes clear, the 2009 Les Cintres is epic. Everything is in place for this being a distance runner. 

photo of Philipponnat Cellar

Les Cintres is a Blanc de Noirs that's only produced in special vintages. Like Krug's Clos d'Ambonnay and Billecart-Salmon's Clos Saint-Hilaire, it stands as one of the few world-class examples of all Pinot Champagne.

The 2009 combines class and raw power. There's little doubt that this will be an aristocratic bottle in the decades to come. This is a wine that works on an incredible scale. It delivers an astonishing depth with nuanced notes of herbs, citrus, stone fruits, and a radiant core of acidity. 

Clos des Goisses is one of the steepest vineyards in all of Champagne, consisting of 5.5 perfectly south-facing hectares of very hard, deep chalk in the Marne. The incline is so extreme that nets are put up to catch workers who lose their footing during harvest. Grands Cintres and Petits Cintres are two of the top, steepest, and most well-exposed sections of the vineyard, planted exclusively with Pinot that's are up to 70 years old.

Les Cintres promises to be an incredible wine. Production is very limited and even after searching for some time, what's on offer is pretty modest. If you're interested, I advise you not to hesitate.

To order, email offers@crushwineco.com or call the store at (212) 980-9463.

Ian McFadden
Director, Fine & Rare Wine
Crush Wine & Spirits

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William Kelley: "The 2009 Extra Brut Blanc de Noirs Les Cintres hails from lieux-dits Les Grands Cintres and Les Petits Cintres in the steep, south-facing part of the Clos des Goisses which is characterized by the thinnest, reddest soils in the vineyard and where the house's oldest vines are planted. Amazingly, the 2009 attained 13.5% alcohol, the highest numbers recorded chez Philipponnat since 1959. Unwinding in the glass with aromas of warm bread, fresh peach, mango and yeast extract, it's full-bodied, thickly textural and vinous, with lively acids—Philipponnat opting to block malolactic fermentation—and a deep, multidimensional core, concluding with a long and powerful finish. This is a broad-shouldered, authoritative wine that may disconcert by virtue of its sheer scale, but it is a potential legend in the making."