The 1996 Dom Pérignon Rosé P2 is showing beautifully, wafting from the glass that mingles aromas of dried fruits, raspberries and toasted bread with nuances of rose hips, peonies, smoke and spices. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied, layered and complete, with a beautifully integrated spine of acidity, excellent concentration and a vinous profile, concluding with a long and iodine-inflected finish. There's a touch more breadth and dimension here than in the white Dom Pérignon P2 of the same vintage, but the two wines share a strong vintage signature this year.
This has plenty of dried roses, rose hip and other very gently seductive perfumes on offer here such as wild cherries, some pepper, plenty of spices and pink, musky marshmallows. The autolysis is still very discreet, although the fruits have changed to another phase of more savory characters and are really delicate. This is undoubtedly a restrained Champagne on a very slow path of evolution. The palate's smoothly layered with the phenolics shaping it in the first phase of the palate, casting a long tube-like form. The core is composed of dried strawberries, some spiced cherries, some dried peaches and pink grapefruit to boot. It then gives way to fresh acidity as it delivers a really thrilling and mouth-watering finish with some toasty hazelnuts and flamed orange zest to close. Superb focus, and the vintage character of the acidity and length is stunning. Beautifully preserved in the cellars for some twenty-odd years. What a treat! Drink now and for another decade or more. This will age on cork very nicely. Truly a superb expression of Dom Perignon Rosé.