Bollinger Grande Annee Brut Rose 2002
Rosé Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
The colour of Bollinger Rosé combines the rich bronze highlights of the Special Cuvée and the intense depth of the red wine. This could be the tint of the raw flesh of wild salmon barely reddened over charcoal. It is a light and a depth. It is the colour of a great wine. The wine reveals all the fullness of expression of the Special Cuvée to the nose. All Bollinger is there: presence and modesty, power and delicacy. And yet other notes come to the fore in the mouth: small wild berries in the countryside on hot summer afternoons. Raspberries, blackberries, gooseberries — the first note of acidity is jolted by the sensuousness of the flesh. An impertinent flavour dances in the mouth, but the lively, joyous sparkle of the fruit is always contained by the wine's precise structure, which gains in fullness and climaxes with mellow notes that stay on the palate and resound in the memory for a long time.
Wine & Spirits - "The sheer intensity and power of this wine is awesome, an almost violent red from the addition of Coteaux Champenois pinot noir from La Côte de Enfants (about seven percent of the blend). It's in overdrive when first opened, an extreme wine with the redness of roses on fire, the impacted flavor of seashell minerality and the cool crispness of apple skin. A day later, the wine is effortlessly detailed, blissfully rich with the subtle toastiness derived from fermentation in old oak barrels. The acidity is there to keep it fresh for as long as it lives, a life that will be measured in decades."
Wine Spectator - "This rosé Champagne shows precision, balance and seamless integration, boasting juicy fruit flavors of ripe black cherry, pomegranate and cassis that mix with violet, spice, almond and candied citrus peel notes. Fresh and vibrant, with a long, lightly spiced finish. Drink now through 2022."
The Wine Advocate - "The 2002 Brut Rose La Grande Annee is a beautifully detailed, subtle wine. A noble, intriguing bouquet leads dried roses, berries, minerals all of which come together with gorgeous articulation. There is a wonderful balance between the vinosity of the Pinot and the more chalky, minerally elements that preserve freshness. The finish is totally impeccable and classy. In a word: Sublime. This is Lot L001831. Disgorged November 10, 2009. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2015."
International Wine Cellar - "Light orange. Heady, intensely perfumed bouquet of dried red berries, singed orange, Asian spices and potpourri. Dry, precise flavors of tangy citrus fruits and candied flowers, along with a strong mineral undertone. Impressively pure rose with strong finishing cut, lingering spiciness and outstanding persistence. Most people assume that pink Champagne won't age but I'd bet on this one being even better in five years. Or even later. (Incidentally, I also tasted the 2002 La Cote aux Enfants Coteaux Champenois, which is Bollinger's 100% pinot noir bottling and provides the red wine base for this bottling. It's a dead-ringer for a great Morgon, with an intense mineral core and vibrant dark berry and bitter cherry fruit character. Unfortunately it is also very rare, coming from a vineyard that is less than a hectare in size. A single bottle also costs about as much as six bottles of top-drawer Morgon too. But what price rarity?) "
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Champagne Bollinger Winery
In 1829, Champagne Bollinger introduced an instantly recognizable, dry, toasty style that connoisseurs around the globe have coveted ever since. Six generations of the Bollinger family have maintained that trademark style, and Bollinger is one of the rare Grande Marque houses to be owned, controlled and managed by the same family since it was founded.
With 399 acres of vineyards situated in the best Grands Crus and Premiers Crus villages, Bollinger relies on its own estate for nearly two-thirds of its grape requirements, including the Pinot Noir that gives its Champagne its distinctive roundness and elegance. Bollinger is one of a select few houses that can control the quality of its grape supply so carefully.
Bollinger is renowned for its stringent quality standards. It adheres to traditional methods, including individual vinification of each marc and cru, barrel fermentation (it is the last Champagne house to employ a full-time cooper) and extra-aging on the lees prior to disgorgement.
Members of the British Royal Court were among the first to embrace Bollinger’s unmistakable quality, and Queen Victoria made Bollinger the exclusive purveyor to the Court by Royal Warrant in 1884. Besides royalty, loyal devotees have included heads of state, celebrities and even famous fictional characters: Agent 007, James Bond, demands the exclusive Champagne Bollinger. View all Champagne Bollinger Wines
About ChampagneView a map of Champagne wineries Champagne is both a region and a method. The wines come from the northernmost vineyards in France and the name conjures an image like no other can. An 18th Century Benedictine monk named Dom Perignon is said to be the first to blend both varietals and vintages, making good wines not only great, but also special and unique to their winemaker. Today, nearly 75% of Champagne produced is non-vintage and made up by a blend of several years' harvests.
All Champagnes must be made by a strictly controlled process called "Méthode Champenoise." The grapes are pressed and fermented for the first time. The blending phase follows and the wine is bottled and temporarily capped. Then comes the second fermentation, a blend of sugar and yeast is added and, this time, the carbon dioxide is kept inside the bottle. This process leaves a great deal of sediment that is extracted through a process of "racking" or "riddling." The bottles are progressively turned upside down until all the sediment is collected in the neck. The necks are then frozen and the sediment is "disgorged." After this phase, the winemaker may decide to add sugar to sweeten the wine. Finally the wine is corked. Some wines move through this process in a couple of months, while others are aged after the riddling phase to build greater complexity and depth.
Champagnes range from dry, "Brut," to slightly sweet, "Demi-Sec." Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes are used in Champagne blends, but "Blancs de Noirs" is made entirely of Pinot Noir and "Blancs de Blanc" is made from only Chardonnay grapes. The high acidity achieved by the northern location is crucial to the balance and structure of these wines.
Not every year is a "vintage" declared. In years when it is not, the wines are blended with the produce from other years to create the non-vintage blend, the house style that remains constant from year to year. But in a great vintage year, champagne houses will bottle by itself the unblended year's produce, and use other portions as "reserve" wines to supplement and enrich the non-vintage blend. A vintage champagne can age quite gracefully, and gain complexity just like any other great still wine.
Mild cheeses like gruyere and shellfish pair nicely with Champagne. Also, oysters and Champagne is a popular combination. A full-flavored vintage Champagne can go with almost any meal.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.