In the early 20th century, almost all of the vines of Champagne were destroyed by phylloxera - a microscopic insect that feeds on the roots and leaves of grapevines. As a result, everything in the region had to be replanted using American rootstock to fight the devastating bug.
Everything except two Bollinger plots classified as Grands Crus: Chaudes Terres and Clos St-Jacques in Aÿ. Both plots are incredibly small: total size of 0.36 hectares and are now the sole contributors to Bollinger Vieilles Vignes Françaises.
Until recently, this exclusive cuvée was produced from three small plots including Croix Rouge, however, this plot was lost to the phylloxera. The Chaudes Terres and Clos St-Jacques vineyards are grown the traditional way following the provignage method, working the plot by hand and even sometimes with the help of a cart-horse.
The 2010 vintage is a heavenly gift to the sensations.
To the eye, it is a deep golden color.
On the nose, the wine opens with delight roasted, nutty, and toasty aromas that are accompanied by subtle, yet hard, candy and honey notes.
As the wine breaths, it yields exquisite aromas of Mirabelle plum and peach, with Tarte Tatin caramelized apple notes.
Moving to the palate, the flavors are pronounced and display the signature characteristic smoothness and depth of Champagne Bollinger.
The wine has remarkable length; flavors linger impressively in the mouth, producing wonderful candied and stewed fruit notes.
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