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Bollinger R.D. 2002

Mix 12
Mix 6
Per Bottle

In Wooden Box

Per Bottle
Delivery Requires up to 2 Working Days Stored Professionally in-bond outside London LCB Eton Park
Description & Technical Information
Champagne Bollinger owns an impressive 178 hectares of vineyards, of which 85% are in Grand Cru and Premier Cru villages. Their land is spread over seven main villages: Aÿ, Avenay, Louvois, Tauxières and Verzenay planted with Pinot Noir; Cuis with Chardonnay; and Champvoisy with Meunier. Bollinger are one of the few Houses to produce the majority of their own grapes for their blends. Pinot Noir represents 60% of the House's vineyards and defines the House style: complex and powerful with remarkable structure. In 2012 Champagne Bollinger was certified High Environment Value (HEV) this certification rewards a number of environmental procedures implemented at the Maison.

Madame Bollinger created the first vintage of this now legendary prestige cuvée in 1961 with the launch of R.D. 1952. An acronym for Recently Disgorged, Bollinger R.D. is the result of Madame Bollinger's great vision: an expert wine with aromas enhanced by its exceptionally long maturation in the Bollinger family cellars - more than three times longer than required.

Weather: The 2002 vintage shaped up magnificently over the spring, with no significant frost and near-perfect flowering. Then followed a summer marked by long, sunny periods interspersed with regular cloudy and rainy spells. The vines were in good health and the dehydration of the grape berries helped them reach new heights of ripeness. Generally considered one of the best harvests in the last twenty years.

Technical Information:
Vineyards: 71% Grand Cru, 29% Premier Cru
Grape Varieties: 60% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay
Ageing: 11 years on the lees
Disgorged: October 2014
Dosage: 4 g/l
Drink: Now to 2030+

Tasting Note: A light golden colour, this has a nose of dried apricot mixed with grilled nuts. R.D. 2002 really comes alive on the palate, expressing toasty flavours and perfectly treading the balance between real weight without being too heavy. The powerful flavours are due to the extra ageing and this seriously mature champagne finishes with a freshness of fruit and long-lasting flavour. Only the very best vintages become Bollinger R.D. and 2002 is one of the best ever. This is mesmerising.
Champagne Bollinger Overview
Expert Reviews
Jancis Robinson MW
“Tasted blind. Tense, dense nose. Savoury. Lemony with marked acidity and lots to chew on. Bone-dry finish, rather a demanding nature. Intellectual wine. Quite long. One of the more evolved. A little like white burgundy plus carbon dioxide. Long. Krug or Bolly?”
Richard Hemming MW
“Disgorged 17 May 2017. 60% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay (usually more like 30%).
Incredibly intense aromas – baked apple, cinnamon, freshly baked bread. Conventional and recognisably champagne, but to a greater, more intense degree. Some creamy coffee on the palate and wonderfully savoury salinity on the finish. Very, very long persistence. Champagne to the power of ten. (RH)”
Antonio Galloni
“The most remarkable thing about the 2002 Extra Brut R.D. is how tense and structured it is. Despite having been disgorged over two years ago, the 2002 is very much tightly wound. After several hours, the power and resonance of the vintage start to come through, along with the natural richness of Pinot from Aÿ. Whereas most 2002 Champagnes are quite ripe in profile, the 2002 R.D. has plenty of depth, but it is depth through concentration as opposed to elevated ripeness. The low dosage style further adds to that sensation. Hints of chamomile, sage, dried flower and red fruits emerge over time, but only with reluctance. I would prefer to cellar the 2002 for at least a few years. If that is not possible, readers should open the wine at least a few hours in advance. Even so, the 2002's best drinking lies somewhere in the future. My sense is that the 2002 will be at its best between the ages of 20 and 30. Disgorged: September 11, 2015.”
Jancis Robinson MW
“Current vintage. Disgorged January 2017. 40% Chardonnay (high for Bollinger). Extra Brut. Dosage 3 g/l.
Deep straw gold. Start of that woodland-mushroom Bollinger aroma. Masses of character. Not quite as tense as some 2002s – more Bollinger style with the dry overlay. Very, very Bollinger.
Drink 2017-2026”
Jancis Robinson MW
“Disgorged October 2014. RS 4 g/l. 60% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay. From Bollinger's UK agent Mentzendorff.
Tasted blind. Dark gold. Mushrooms (a mature Bollinger trademark), savour and density with a dry finish. Definitely Bollinger RD. Some refinement too. Reminds me a little of a fine sake – umami?”
Robert Parker
“Big names do not help if you are not familiar with a certain house style, and so I can understand everyone who dislikes Bollinger's 2002 RD Extra Brut, which at first sight reveals a matured if not an old wine displaying toffee, floral (hyacinths, narcissus, sage), vegetal and spicy aromas (oak, cannabis, frankincense, black bread) -- but almost no fruit (at least no fresh fruit). This wine was disgorged in March 2014, but just needs a lot of time in the glass to develop its complexity. On the palate this is a very pure, fresh, lively, firmly structured and almost ascetic wine with complexity, but almost no sensuality. Very distinctive style.”
Michael Edwards
“Expressive and richly textured Pinot Noir. Profound.
Jancis Robinson MW
“Disgorged October 2014. 60% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay. RS 4 g/l.
Tasted blind. Pinkish gold. Very slightly oxidised but not dangerously so on the nose. Then great energy on the end. This is almost Krug-like in how complex and tight knit it is. Savoury. Impressive. Energetic. Unusually dry finish.”
Essi Avellan MW
“It has been a long wait for R.D. fans since the 1997 vintage, which was followed by only minuscule amounts of 1999 and 2000 coming in large formats only. Now there is a chance to celebrate 50 years of R.D. with the outstanding 2002 vintage. It is a bold, fresh and seamless vintage of R.D. with the higher than usual Chardonnay content bringing an extra layer of elegance. I enjoy the drive and linearity the wine has despite the huge concentration. The October 2013 disgorged bottle has been the best with super-stylish with its mineral restraint and autumnal. Apple and spice fruit profile with an under-control oxidative undertone. Perfected, super dry 3g/l dosage.”
Jancis Robinson MW
“(Bottle) Tasted blind. Disgorged October 2014.
A little less fruity on the nose, as though it is a little evolved so seemed clearly from a bottle rather than a magnum - confirmed. Again very dry end.”
Jancis Robinson MW
“(Magnum) Tasted blind. Disgorged October 2014.
Big and broad on the nose. With a hint of putty. Edge of cream-of-mushroom soup. Bone dry and even a little chewy on the end. It seemed as though it had to be a magnum and it was. ”
Jancis Robinson MW
“Magnum. Lots of minerality on the nose and underlying fruit. Tense-issimo. Almost austere!”
Josh Raynolds
“Light gold. Powerful, mineral-laced scents of orange zest, pear skin, iodine and chamomile, with a hint of anise in the background. On the palate, vibrant orchard and citrus fruit flavors unfurl slowly, picking up toasty lees and mace nuances that build on the back half. Sappy, tightly focused and stony, finishing with excellent thrust and building florality. This is showing an extremely youthful profile for its age and while I know that the received wisdom is that R.D. wines should be drunk soon after release, I'd let this one get some more years on it. ”
Antonio Galloni
“Bollinger's 2002 R.D. is striking in its beauty. Silky and caressing on the palate, the 2002 impresses for its exceptional balance and harmony. In 2002 so many Champagnes are ripe and explosive in style, but the 2002 R.D. is quite restrained by comparison. Hints of apricot pit, smoke, almonds, spices and pears ring out on the super-finessed, inviting finish. The 2002 is going to be nearly impossible to resist in its youth, but it should also age impeccably. All the elements are in the right place.”
Jancis Robinson MW
“Very firm, savoury nose with Bollinger's trademark fungi. Very powerfully so but with excellent acidity and lift on the palate. This is touted as a 50th anniversary offering because the first RD (Recently Disgorged) vintage released on the UK market was the 1952, in 1967 (so it was three years older than this 2002). It was launched at the same time as the 1953 on the French and Swiss markets and the 1955 on the American and Italian markets. A nod to British taste for seriously mature champagne? This wine should not be served too cool. It has real weight - though does not taste heavy. I loved it on first release as Grande Année and it is less austere now. A bit mellower and more open though still with the deep throat salve sensation on the finish.”
James Suckling
“Super fresh, this is striking given the 10 years in the cellars; it has a fine citrus nose - plenty of lemon, grapefruit, yellow chalky notes, some lighter floral elements too. The palate is super dry (dosage at 3-4g) and there's a silky, sherbet-like texture, smooth, fine and long. The citrus flavours give way to the driving surging acidity, thunderous acidity, really driving and powerful. The finish twists very slowly through to light-toasted cashew fruit flavours, but lemon citrus prevails. This is thrilling Champagne.”
See All Reviews
News Articles
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    In celebration of over 40 years of partnership as the Official Champagne of 007 and the upcoming film No Time To Die, Champagne Bollinger has produced a limited edition gift box that brings together three icons: Bollinger’s signature Special Cuvée, the Aston Martin DB5 and James Bond.
  3. Bollinger PN VZ15 - New Release

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    July 20, 2020

    How Bollinger’s new PN VZ 15 is a glorious deep-dive into terroir - Written by Anne Krebiehl MW for The-Buyer.Net The new Bollinger PN VZ 15 releases on 21st July 2020
  4. Bollinger: Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot

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    March 1, 2020

    During a visit to the house of Bollinger in Aÿ last year, we explored champagnes from some of the region's hottest ever vintages, dating as far back as 1947. We also held a mini-vertical of Special Cuvée base vintages, tasted a trio of R.D.s and had a look at the new Coteaux Champenois.
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    April 19, 2019

    Shortly after the 2018 harvest, Bollinger Chef de Cave Gilles Descôtes declared that "2017 was the worst harvest of my life and 2018 is the best". We visited the house in Aÿ to taste the base wines and also tasted some of the rarer grape varieties, such as Arbane, Petit Meslier and Pinot Gris.
  6. LIVE Bollinger Tasting and Q&A

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    March 1, 2019

    On Wednesday 6th March 2019, we’ll be going LIVE on Instagram TV with Bollinger winemaker Karl Reuter, who'll be guiding us through a tasting of six Bollinger champagnes and answering questions put to him by the live audience.
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    The difficult 2016 vintage appears to have been kind to Champagne Bollinger. We tasted the Vins Clairs at the winery in Aÿ last month and the house are optimsitic - even drawing likeness to the magnificent 1988 vintage! We judged for ourselves...
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