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Professional Ratings: 97 Australian Wine Companion, 95 Wine & Spirits, 94 Wine Spectator, 94 The Wine Advocate, 94 International Wine Cellar
Region: Champagne, France
Varietal: Vintage Sparkling Wine
Other Info: Great Wine Gift
Alcohol By Volume: 12%
Item no. 112034
La Grande Année is the Prestige Cuvée of Champagne Bollinger. It is only produced when exceptional quality harvests occur, and is the expression of Bollinger's know-how. More than the illustration of the vintage particularity, La Grande Année is the result of the Bollinger style, of its exceptional "terroir" and traditional wine making techniques. La Grande Année develops a beautiful rounded structure and combines rich, complex and intense aromas, the expression of which changes according to the characteristics of the vintage.
Slightly pinkish, or rose gold color which shows the maturity of the wine. Aromas of rhubarb, stone fruits, toasty with notes of exotic spices. The bubble is very present but silky (proof of the lengthy aging on lees).
The grapes come exclusively from Grands and Premiers Crus. The blend of La Grande Année 2002 is 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay.
This is a blend of 60% pinot noir and 40% chardonnay (Grand Années highest ever percentage of chardonnay). It also followed in the footsteps of the 2000 Grande Année with eight years on lees (previously it was six years). I tasted it in Champagne in July, and two months later in Australia, and it is a truly superb wine. Bright gold, it has all the legendary complexity and power of Bollinger, yet has great purity, precision, freshness and balance through to the finish of its very long lemon/citrus zest palate.
Digging deep into its limestone soils, this 2002 comes at you with scents of jasmine, lilac, Asian pear and a continuous pale chalk power. The oak aging of its base wines darkens the fruit and increases its muscular tone, a tannic austerity gentled by the floral notes. The wine smells beautiful: For all its mineral backbone and ten years of maturity, the impression it leaves is that of a sunny meadow—a scent tied to the freshness of fruit in the vintage.
Ripe, appealing flavors of peach, Gala apple, toast and blood orange mix with a streak of minerality, racy acidity and spice notes, all set on the fine-grained texture. Fresh and focused, with a long, mouthwatering, nut-tinged finish. Drink now through 2025.
The 2002 Brut La Grande Annee is marvelous. The 2002 is an understated Grande Annee that caresses the palate with layers of effortless, weightless fruit. The mousse is exceptionally fine, which adds to the impression of total elegance. This is a relatively bright, floral Grande Annee with plenty of aromatic lift, inner perfume and no sense of heaviness at all. A rich, creamy finish adds the final note of complexity and pedigree. The 2002 is 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay, 71% from Grand Cru villages and 29% from Premier Crus. Disgorged February 2011. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2022.
Light gold. Ripe pear and honey on the explosively perfumed nose, with sexy floral and marzipan nuances expanding with air. Fat, full and palate-coating, boasting impressive power and thrust. Shows an intriguing blend of richness and energy and finishes long, with smoky and spicy nuances.