Champagne Bollinger La Grande Annee is a vintage Champagne only produced in exceptional years. It is Bollinger’s prestige Champagne.
Bollinger can trace its origins back to 1829 when the company was established by Jacques Bollinger. It remains, to this day, one of the few independently, family-owned Champagne houses. Like most Champagne houses Bollinger uses grapes from their own vineyards and also buys fruit in from growers. Bollinger own some 164 hectares of vineyards in the best Premier Cru and Grand Cru sites, the majority of which is Pinot Noir, therefore most of Bollinger’s Champagnes have a higher proportion of Pinot Noir than most other Champagnes. The grapes for Champagne Bollinger La Grande Année are sourced from only Premier and Grand Cru rated vineyards.
Champagne Bollinger La Grande Annee 2007 is a blend of 65% Pinot Noir and 35% from 21 different 13 crus: mainly Aÿ and Verzenay for the Pinot Noir and Le Mesnil-sur-Oger and Oiry for the Chardonnay. The first fermentation takes place entirely in old oak barrels. Only the “cuvée” juice (i.e. juice from the first pressing of the grapes) is used for making La Grande Année and the entire primary fermentation takes place in old oak barrels, an uncommon practice in Champagne. The wine is aged on its lees for a minimum of 5 years and, after manual riddling and disgorging, the wine rests for a minimum of 3 months prior to release.
Dosage is moderate for the 2012 at 8 g/L. Winemaker is Gilles Descotes.
Champagne Bollinger has a long association with James Bond and La Grande Année features in the Daniel Craig film Casino Royale.