The 1998 Blanc de Blancs Clos du Mesnil has developed beautifully since I last tasted it. What a wine. For the first few years of its life, the 1998 seemed to lack personality, then, suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, it blossomed. Today, the 1998 is rich, powerful and explosive, none of which was a few years ago. Layers of textured fruit, pastry, spices and crushed rocks jump from the glass. Still an infant, the 1998 promises to drink well for two to three decades. This is without question the best bottle of the 1998 I have ever tasted. Time to do another complete vertical?
Anticipated maturity: 2013-2038
Robert Parker 96
The 1998 Clos de Mesnil offers wonderfully fragrant, toasty, shaved almond and orange blossom aromas over a core of apple tart, ginger and mace. Just starting to show some bottle evolution, the palate fills the mouth with taut, spice-laced flavors offset by lively acid and supported by very fine bubbles. The finish is long with layers of baking spices.