Drinking 30 year old NV brut Champagnes

Purchased from an old cellar.
Hard to know exactly when these were bottled; the only clues are in the labels which seem to point to that thirty year mark.

And I think we are missing something by not holding a few bottles back. Not sure it makes financial sense, but fun to see how people who have relatively low expectations, when they drink something unexpectedly good.

Brilliant Success 92-95points

Krug mv (of course)

Success 90 points

Hmmm!!! 84 or less
Moët both labels
Verve Cliquot

Very cool to try those old bottles which you don’t normally think of cellaring. How was the effervescence on the bottles?

agree 100%. I’ve had a several 20-30 yr old NVs and I’ve found enjoyment in every one. We had a case of at least 15 yr old Taittinger la francaise and it was just great!! The NVs from the 70s and 80s I’ve had had varing degrees of enjoyment but they were right in my wheelhouse for mature flavors. Of course, I love old wines and I enjoy even the old champers with no bubbles. Just a preference. If people don’t like those oxidative/sherry flavors, they probably wouldnt like them.

I’m surprised to see Piper in the top category. The others there do not surprise me, nor do the wines in the lowest category. It is very interesting. I’ve never had a NV Champagne anywhere close to that age.

Bubbles were still pretty good, the one exception Moët White Star.
I was a little surprised by Piper, but we had a bottle yesterday.it was a very good example, but I have had slightly better. Probably the lowest of my “brilliant success” but as it warmed up, there was a slight whiff of cork taint.

I purchased some La Francaise at a great price last year with the intent of downing them as easy drinkers. However, when I opened it on New Year’s Eve quickly realized it was going to need time in cellar before coming around. Not sure how I feel about that. On one hand it’s an indicator of quality at a very low price, but on the other hand if I’m aging it I probably would have gone with something a little higher end.

I had a Krug MV (white label) circa early 80s recently and it was a letdown. Possible storage issue, but it was a dud

Has to be a storage issue. I’ve had several from multiple sources and they are outstanding. Plenty of effervescence and acidity in addition to complex aged notes.

Fascinating, thanks for posting this Mark.

I store most of my Champagne for several years, and also purchase older ones at auction - usually positiv to fine experiences, with some mean or off bottles, imo always depending on storage.
I love the toasty smooth taste of old Champagne, but not all the time.

I’ve had some great older (+30 yo) Champagnes, but more often they’ve been way past their peak with completely flat mouthfeel and completely oxidized taste. It’s funny though, how these flat and oxidized wines can be surprisingly tasty and drinkable - as Eric above said - while similarly oxidized reds, for example, are just dull and off-putting. Especially a Krug Private Cuvée (probably from the 1960’s or 1970’s) was flat and oxidized, yet still remarkably complex and rewarding in its own right.

One of the greatest older NVs I’ve had was Moët & Chandon Brut Imperial, estimated to be from the early 1980’s. Wonderfully alive and fresh with fine, silky mousse and beautifully developed, slightly caramelized flavors with nice deal of oxidative (not oxidized) character.

I´ve had a lot of old sparklers but
the best old Champagne have been so far
Dom Perignon from the sixties, the last digit unreadable, maybe 1964 or 1966
Krug 1973, kindly served by Francois Audouze at a tasting in Paris
Pommery Magnum, late seventies (or early eighties), black label - very fine for what it was, could even have been an aged prestige cuvee