Bollinger Grande Annee Brut 2002
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.
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.
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With 399 acres of vineyards situated in the best Grands Crus and Premiers Crus villages, Bollinger relies on its own... View More