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Best Champagnes tasted by our experts in 2021

We've rounded up the top-scoring Champagnes tasted by our team of experts so far this year, all scoring 96+ points...

The list below is a compilation of the best Champagnes tasted by our experts so far in 2021 –  the cream of the crop of new releases, as well as mature bottles that are ready for drinking and enjoying now.

The top scoring Champagne was tasted during Decanter’s recent virtual Billecart-Salmon Masterclass hosted by Peter Liem and Mathieu Roland-Billecart, owner of the Billecart-Salmon Champafbe house and the seventh generation of the family.

In his notes Liem says of the Elisabeth Salmon Brut Rosé 2008: ‘Despite ageing on its lees for 10 years, it remains almost shockingly youthful, its vividly primary flavours of red cherry, strawberry and nectarine wrapped up in a taut, tense frame.’ One for the cellar then.

Insider tips for pairing Champagne with food

Three Krug Champagnes make the list, all were tasted by Yohan Castaing for his First taste: Krug new releases feature in mid-May. The top-scorer of these was the Krug, 159ème Édition which he describes as enthralling with incredible length. ‘The texture is silky and quite fleshy but remains surprisingly delicate for this great Champagne.’

The top scoring of the list below is Philipponnat, Clos des Goisses 1979, with 100 points, tasted as part of the Champagne Philipponnat vertical of recently-disgorged Clos des Goisses, published on Decanter Premium in June 2021.

Five more wines make the list – all scoring 96 points – including Dom Pérignon 2006 and Cristal 2013 from Louis Roederer. See full tasting notes and scores for all the wines below.

100 point Champagnes tasted in 2020

Krug, Clos Dambonnay, Champagne 2002

Salon, Cuvee S, Le Mesnil Blanc de blancs, Champagne 1996

Salon, Cuvee S, Le Mesnil Blanc de-blancs, Champagne 2008

Decanter’s best Champagnes of 2021 (so far…):

The below wines were all tasted in 2021 and scored 96 points and above. 

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