Dom Pérignon is Vintage Only: an assemblage of the finest grapes of a single year in Champagne. It is an act of creation in the most inspired and most audacious sense of them. With, as a final reward, the birth of a vintage.
- FRA - Champagne
It's only a blessing when nature concentrates the fruit in the way it has done with the 2003. This mighty and extra rich wine will benefit from being drunk as really old. 30 years probably...
Rating 96 - Richard Juhlin, The Champagne Club
Very much part of the Dom Pérignon family with its reductive, smoky nose with tight lemony fruit and a hint of citrus peel. Beautifully balanced. Thoroughly satisfying.
18.5/20 - Jancis Robinson
Unfortunately there is only one new release from Dom Perignon this year. The 2003 is one of the most unusual Dom Perignons I have ever tasted, going back to 1952. Readers will remember that 2003 was a torrid vintage across northern Europe, especially during the critical month of August, when temperatures remained very hot for well over a month. The harvest was the earliest on record, until 2011, that is. I suppose its not that surprising Chef de Caves Richard Geoffroy chose to make a 2003 Dom Perignon, given his penchant for risk-taking, an approach that has yielded so many memorable wines that stretch the perception of what big brand Champagne is and can be. The 2003 Dom Perignon is a big, broad shouldered wine. It does not have the seductiveness of the 2000, nor the power of the 2002. It is instead very much its own wine. In 2003 Geoffroy elected to use more Pinot Noir than is typically the case, and that comes through in the wine’s breath and volume. The 2003 is a big, powerful Champagne that will require quite a bit of time to shed some of its baby fat. The trademark textural finesse is there, though. I expect the 2003 to be a highly divisive Champagne because of its extreme personality, but then again, many of the world’s legendary wines were made from vintages considered freakish at the time. The 2003 is an atypically, rich, powerful, vinous Dom Perignon loaded with fruit, structure and personality. It is not for the timid, but rather it is a wine for those who can be patient. No one has a crystal ball, but personally I will not be surprised if in 20 years’ time the 2003 is considered an iconic Champagne. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2038.
Rating 94+ Antonio Galloni, Wine Advocate (NOV/2011)
Wine taste regulars are well familiar with my adoration of the spectacular Dom Pérignon 2002, which you can still pick up under $200. The recent release of the 2003 has been greeted with much scepticism, particularly as one of the latest releases for this aberrant heatwave vintage, recording Champagne’s hottest summer on record. Even Moët intelligently released its 2003 before its 2002 vintage wines. Chardonnay was scarce, necessitating a change in the Dom Pérignon blend. And to protect it from oxidation in bottle, the juice was allowed to oxidise for two or three hours as it came off the press. To what effect? In its credit, Dom Pérignon is one of the better 2003s made in Champagne. In a vintage as challenging as 2003 this is hardly an endorsement. This is a rich and powerful Dom, layered with aromas of ripe peach, brioche and roast nuts, admirably maintaining a refreshing note of lemon blossom perfume. The palate leads out with fine, crunchy lemon zest and quickly pulls into a firm, drying finish. Its acid line is admirable yet fruit falls away quickly, leaving a dry, phenolic, skinsy finish that defines this as the least vintage for Dom Pérignon of the modern era. The question is rightfully asked as to why it was ever released. Rating 92 - Tyson Stelzer
Winery Tasting Notes
The bouquet spirals through sweet, bright floral notes and the lively minerality so typical of Dom Pérignon, then notes of candied fruit, plants, the incredible freshness of camphor leaf and finally the dark hints of spices and liquorice root.
The wine is currently still physical. It is compelling, tactile and vibrant rather than aromatic. The rhythm and tempo are more dominant than the melody. At first mild and delicate, then strongly confidently mineral, persistent, precise, with a refined bitterness, and an iodine, saline tang.