Dom Pérignon Maison Winemaker Vincent Chaperon remembers when he was just a 17-year-old teenager. Referencing the Dom Pérignon Plénitude Deuxième P2 2000–the second expression of the vintage marked by 17 years of maturation on yeast lees–Chaperon remarks, “I remember when I was 17, and I think this P2 is at the same stage, where we are proud of our roots but are trying to become an adult, to define the sense of our life.”
Chaperon’s roots grow deep in the wine world–his family owned an estate in Pomerol, Bordeaux, where as a teenager, the Frenchman would help out with the ins and outs of producing wine. With winemaking in his blood, Chaperon went on to earn a degree in viticulture and oenology from the Ecole Nationale d’Agronomie de Montpellier, worked as a winemaker in far-flung Chile as well as nearby Pomerol and Sauternes, before joining Moët & Chandon in 2000, and eventually Dom Pérignon in 2005.
An avid sailor, Chaperon likens making wines to being out at sea, where weather conditions can be unpredictable and one needs to be prepared to tackle these climate challenges. “Making vintage Champagne, especially, is about reaching a consistency (in style) despite the inconsistencies brought about by the weather,” he notes. At Dom Pérignon, each vintage Champagne is an opportunity to reinvent itself, to create unique wines that expresses the character of both a specific vintage and the Champagne house.
Released in 2008, the First Plenitude of the 2000 vintage was a classic Dom Pérignon signature: full-bodied, sensual, and well-balanced. Having spent an additional time on yeast lees, the Second Plenitude has grown into a wine that is more full-bodied, more harmonious, more complex; but still retaining its delicate balance of structure and texture.
Chaperon describes “plenitude” as “a moment in life when someone (something) is showing their personality intensely; a certain vibrancy”. And indeed, upon tasting, the Dom Pérignon Plénitude Deuxième P2 2000 opens with a lively bouquet of brioche, bergamot orange, and stone fruits. An intoxicating effervescence gives way to a plump creaminess that rounds out lovingly in the mouth. On the palate, its minerality and acidity is pronounced, but supplemented by layers of fruit purity and toastiness.
As Chaperon mentions in the video below, the P2 has energy it has been accumulating for 17 years, the energy it needs to go further in life, to reach another stage; perhaps of more wisdom and complexity. This is where we can only wait in anticipation for the P3 edition of the 2000 vintage, which Chaperon reveals might take up to 30 years of maturation. “P3 will be the achievement of the full personality of Dom Pérignon,” Chaperon teases. And if the Dom Pérignon Plénitude Deuxième P2 2000 can be liken to an energetic and passionate teenager on the cusp of adulthood and full of potential, we can already imagine P3 to be a wise and confident adult, definitive and sophisticated.
Dom Pérignon P2 2000 is available for purchase in limited quantities through specialist retailers as well as Moët Hennessy Diageo Singapore’s private sales channel. Price is available on request.