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|Bollinger La Grande Année Rosé 2005
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|Bollinger La Grande Année Rosé 2005
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Bollinger La Grande Année Rosé 2005 ChampagneThe Bollinger Champagne House has created prestigious champagnes with character, distinguished by their elegance and complexity, since 1829. The story began with Athanase de Villermont, the youngest son of a noble family. He inherited an extensive estate from his family in the Aÿ region. He immediately foresaw the extraordinary potential of the wines of Champagne. Upon meeting Joseph Bollinger, a widely travelled German who left his country to learn about Champagne, and Paul Renaudin, a local man fascinated by the world of wine, the firm of Renaudin-Bollinger & Cie was founded on 6th February 1829. Owning 164 hectares of vineyards of which 85% are Grand Cru and Premier Cru vines, Bollinger is one of the few champagne Houses to produce the majority of their own grapes for their blends.
In 1976, Bollinger Vintage became Grande Année; then, in 2004, "La" Grande Année… A name simple enough to illustrate its exceptional status: because only truly extraordinary years become vintage at Bollinger. This vintage was entirely fermented in barrels and is produced from 13 crus: mainly Aÿ and Verzenay for the Pinot Noir and Avize, Chouilly and Mesnil-sur-Oger for the Chardonnay - 95% Grand Crus and 5% Premier Crus were used. At Bollinger, only very high quality harvests become vintage: 2005 was a temperate and generous year and revealed a champagne with a great aromatic ripeness.
Madame Bollinger agreed to a Bollinger rosé under one condition, it had to be extraordinary, and that is how La Grande Année Rosé was born: the unique blend between a great vintage champagne and a red wine from a unique plot, the legendary Côte aux Enfants. This unique vineyard is one of the few to contain extremely rare ungrafted vines - which produce more intense and flavourful wines, with better aging potential. To produce a red wine of such high quality in the champagne region is a challenge: a rare treat, a true Bollinger.
A salmon-pink colour, La Grande Année Rosé 2005 is extremely aromatic, with strong red fruit and peachy notes. This strength on the nose is produced by the addition of 5% of the concentrated and complex Pinot Noir from the superb Côte aux Enfants vineyard. The delicious red berry flavours continue on the palate and combines with zesty citrus fruits, leave a lasting long finish. This is a wonderfully complex rosé from a tough vintage and a wine that will certainly age well.
Grape Varieties: 72% Pinot Noir, 28% Chardonnay
Disgorged: September 2014
Came 3rd in our Rosé tasting: Read full tasting write up from January 2017
Bollinger La Grande Année Rosé 2005 Champagne: same day delivery in London, next day UK mainland & free delivery on 6+ bottles. Bollinger Overview Vintage Overviews Grand & Premier Crus Explained
“Medium-deep cherry colour with emerging onionskin tones. Stylish, spicy-fruity nose with a degree of restraint. The oaky note comes more prominent on the palate with an oxidative notion. Strong, winey and structured with a long, weighty finish. Muscular and masculine.”
“Almonds, just off dry. Deep flavour.”
“This is a thrilling wine with a beautiful nose, marked by extremely sensual and forward wild red berry notes. This scent is amazing – so clean, pure and direct. The red wine element was down to 30hl/ha and they had to green harvest hard to get to this concentration. This was a critical decision because it gives a stunning character to the wine. The nose leads with bright, pristine, strawberry notes and a buoyant palate follows hot on its heels. The texture is very smooth, silky and ethereal and it seems forward and flattering already. Having said this it will still manage to age well such is the tension on the finish. There is a touch of the honey that I also spotted in the ’05 LGA white – which serves to make its precocity even more pronounced. Interestingly, no La Côtes Aux Enfants red was made in this vintage because they needed all of it for their rosé.”
“I love when Bollinger let the Pinot Noir be so heavily dominant. Also here, we are dealing with a great vintage for the traditional boutique house in Ay. The scent is perhaps a bit more closed than it is in the white twin, but on the other hand, seasoned with new seductive elements reminiscent of Marie Antoinette. A puff box note and dried rose petals romanticize risqué over the classic nutty depth. The length and the structural grandeur is extremely impressive.”
The Bollinger champagne House has created prestigious champagnes with character, distinguished by their elegance and complexity, since 1829.
The story began with Athanase de Villermont, the youngest son of a noble family. A great soldier who shone during the American War of Independence, he inherited an extensive estate from his family in the Aÿ region. He immediately foresaw the extraordinary potential of the wines of Champagne, but as an aristocrat he was forbidden to become involved in any sort of trade.
Upon meeting Joseph Bollinger, a widely travelled German who left his country to learn about the Champagne wine trade, and Paul Renaudin, a local man who was fascinated by the world of wine. The firm of Renaudin-Bollinger & Cie was founded on 6th February 1829. Joseph took care of sales and Paul of the cellar. Athanase had founded a champagne House that was to endure through the centuries.
Owning 164 hectares of vineyards of which 85 per cent are Grand Cru and Premier Cru vines, spread over seven main vineyards: Aÿ, Avenay, Tauxières, Louvois et Verzenay, planted with Pinot Noir, Cuis with Chardonnay and Champvoisy with Pinot Meunier. Bollinger is one of the few champagne Houses to produce the majority of their own grapes for their blends. Pinot Noir represents sixty per cent of the House's vineyards, and this is the predominant grape in the Special Cuvée blend. Complex and powerful, it provides Bollinger wines with their remarkable structure.
Another unique character of Bollinger wines is that the best crus are vinified in wood thanks to a stock of 3,000 small, aged casks. The House lets its wines mature for twice as long as the appellation requirement as they believe that great Champagne needs time to develop its full character.
Another of Bollinger's distinctive features are two plots, the Clos Saint-Jacques and Chaudes Terres, which have never succumbed to phylloxera, the disease which ravaged almost all of the champagne wine-growing area in the early 20th century. These ungrafted vines are entirely tended by hand and reproduced using a form of layering called provignage, thereby providing the means to preserve this extraordinary heritage from which the very exclusive Vieilles Vignes Françaises Cuvée is produced.
Bollinger never yields to the easy option: wherever ancestral techniques have proved to guarantee the highest quality, they are preserved however challenging this choice might prove. Hand riddling, reserve magnums and vintage cuvées stoppered with natural corks, and a resident cooper: the House proudly perpetuates ancient skills and valuable crafts. Bollinger is the first champagne House to obtain the highly respected Patrimoine Vivant (living heritage) seal of quality which rewards exceptional craftsmanship and skill.
In 2008, for the first time in its history, the House placed its future into the care of a Chairman who was not a family member. Their choice fell on Jérôme Philipon, originally from the Champagne region, who had led an impressive career with large industrial groups. The choice might be unexpected - but Bollinger has never hesitated to reject conformity for the good of the House and its wines!
With the Bollinger family's support, Jérôme Philipon has extended his predecessor's programme of modernisation and investment. The House has continued to preserve its traditional expertise while incorporating the best of new technologies for the future development of the brand, both in terms of quality and commercial growth.