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1961 Salon Collection 99 points by Richard Juhlin / If I was near tears due to the disappointment of the 1966, the tears came for real in the next flight when this bottle, disgorged at the same time and with exactly the same low dosage, was so lovely that my emotions surged over. In fact, this wonderfully youthful wine is the bottle that reminded me most of the world's top wine - the 1928 Pol Roger Grauves. It was the same improbable contrast between the youthful and mature notes. The scent is so unreal, with its euphoric pheromone-reeking perfume enhanced by linden, geranium, lily of the valley, acacia, ginger, fresh tarragon, mint, lime zest and lemon of Sorrento. Crystal-clear brilliance, laser-sharp clarity and delicate precision. Affectionate with faint undertones of vanilla, brioche and toast. A flinty mineral finesse and whirling small pearl necklace bubbles pirouetting on the palate and bursting like caviar grains in the mouth. What is lacking, in comparison to the 1928 Grauves, is a hazy oiliness that may come in twenty years or so. Imagine a 51-year old who can personalise melted snow, late winter and life's rebirth.
This Champagne is produced from a one-hectare parcel owned by Salon: "Salon’s garden", and from 19 other smaller parcels in Mesnil-sur-Oger, chosen by Aimé Salon at the beginning of the century. The wines are cellared in the bottle for an average of 10 years, gaining in complexity and finesse.
The proof that memory and history are important is shown by the bottles in the cellars from nearly all the vintages that have ever been produced at Salon. Headed by Aimé Salon until his death in 1943, the house was then left to his nephew. In 1988, Champagne Laurent-Perrier, a family-owned company, became the majority shareholder of Champagne Salon.
Made from 100% Chardonnay from the Côte des Blancs grand cru vineyard, Le Mesnil-sur- Oger. The densely planted vines are located on the mid-slope in chalky soil, and the Cordon de Royat method of trellising is used, which allows access to the soil at the base of the vines.
The grapes are picked and sorted by hand. Only the first pressing, or cuvée, is used. This is the lightest, freshest juice, containing the highest percentage of acidity, which is essential to the evolution and vivacity of the Champagne. The first fermentation takes place in a stainless steel tank. The wine receives no oak exposure and does not undergo malolactic fermentation.
The wine is cellared in the bottle for an average of 10 years, gaining in complexity and finesse. Riddling is done by hand. All bottles are disgorged within 8 months of the first disgorgement, also by hand.
1961/ Flowering languid at the start, very rapid from full bloom stage to completion. Harvesting commenced on 20th September in excellent conditions, revealing a good health status. Fine quality.
Recommended glass shape
Average Bottle Price
|4 944€ +27.3%||3 883€ +1.0%||3 844€ +116.4%||1 776€|