How good is Napoléon Tradition Champagne?
Sparkling wine review of Non-Vintage Napoléon Champagne Tradition Brut, France
Score: 91/100 points
Champagne Napoléon has been making sparkling wine since 1825, from “the best chardonnays from La Côte des blancs and pinots noirs from la Montagne de Reims”, both of course being the best two sub-areas of the Champagne region, France.
The Napoléon Champagne trademark was registered in 1907.
Napoléon Tradition Brut is the brand’s non-vintage cuvée, while Napoleon also makes a Blanc de Blancs (100% Chardonnay), a Rosé and vintage cuvées.
Tradition is made from 50% Chardonnay (so, from the Cote des blancs) and 50% Pinot Noir (from the Montagne de Reims).
The sparkling wine is aged for 3 years on lees in its bottle, with a moderate 9 grams per liter of sugar added at dosage for smoothness.
Overall Review Notes & Tasting Impressions
With a bright and shiny lemon-yellow color filled with appealing an sparkling gold hues, Napoléon Tradition Champagne features vibrant notes of ripe lemon and limoncello liqueur to the nose, making it smell zesty and pleasing.
Subtle notes of walnut and nutmeg, with touches of buttery brioche, make for tempting fruity aromatic profile, like freshly-baked and delicately-spicy lemon tart.
From there, the palate goes pleasing your senses even more with bursting and satisfying lemon flavors.
Those come with a perfect balance of crisp acidity that underlines and freshens up the zestiness of the wine, together with a smooth texture that features fine and elegant bubbles.
The whole feels crisp and vibrant, opulent in its fruity expression, but also long and rather complex with its layers of waxy honey and toasted hazelnut, vanilla and sweet spices. The subtle oxidative edge adds so much complexity, always in a crisp and mineral, salivating feel.
The finish is long and mineral, with delicate phenolics delivering a herbal spiciness and a touch of bitterness, like a good lemony bitters drink.
An extremely composed non-vintage cuvée is the Napoléon Tradition Brut Champagne, opulent in flavors and perfectly balanced, with pleasing complexity and depth. A complete expression of a high-quality non-vintage cuvée.