Extra dry humour | 1988 Pol Roger Extra Dry Champagne

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Ah, the French are very good at sensible names for their wines…

A champagne labelled as “Extra Dry” (by Pol Roger or anybody else) is obviously dry, ain’t it?

Actually, Extra Dry (or Extra Sec) is – incongruously – a sweeter style of champagne, with about 15 grams per litre of sugar, compared to Pol Roger’s Brut Réserve NV at about 10 g/ltr and Rich Demi Sec at 34 g/ltr.


Having previously sold a bottle of 1976 Pol Roger Extra Dry, Arden recently acquired a bottle of 1988 Pol Roger Extra Dry (from a client in Cheshire).

The ’88 was highly-regarded by the late great Michael Broadbent MW, who noted in his Vintage Wine book “Nearly 20 notes… Consistently good but also consistently noting that it could take more bottle age… splendid flavour and length – and that crucial refinement, finesse”.

As far as I know, the Extra Dry bottling was not made after 1996. I haven’t seen any vintages of it after then, at any rate.

From a very good vintage – arguably the best of the 1980s (though 1982 and 1985 have their claims) – it’s an ideal bottle for Sunday lunch on 25th December (or whenever you like)… 🎄

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