This release marks the fiftieth anniversary of the Bollinger R.D. (recently disgorged). The wine sits on lees for a far longer period of time than any other Bollinger champagne with the concept of “combining a very long period of aging on lees with recent disgorgement, creating a striking contrast between a fresh and lively palate and the complex aromas of an aged vintage.” The bottle I tasted was disgorged October 2013. It’s Extra Brut with a dosage of 3g/l. 60% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay.
Very coiled and tight at first, with a markedly fresher and more pure profile than the 2004 La Grande Années tasted alongside it. Indeed Guy de Rivoire seemed anxious to explain that it would open up and gain depth given air – which it did. The initial impression of lemons and citrus blossom slowly give way to honey, orange peel, sea shells, almonds and poached fruits. What sets the wine apart for me is the exquisite acid line, more nuanced phenolics and soaring length. It really does go on to meet the horizon. Depth and complexity aren’t issues and one could wax lyrical with an almost endless array of descriptors but ultimately it’s a very special wine that isn’t easily captured either by words or numbers. 97
Region: Champagne, France
Tasted: April 2014