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On the 30th of October the 24th James Bond movie has its premier worldwide.SPECTRE will be the 14th Bond film to feature Bollinger as James Bond’s Champagne of choice, with the discerning secret agent this time deciding to drink the exclusive prestige cuvée Bollinger R.D. 2002.

RICHARD JUHLIN ON BOLLINGER Joseph Bollinger was the German from Würtemberg who founded this ancient house in 1829. The French called him simply “Jacques.” The firm’s large estates in the best Pinot villages were bought by his sons Georges and Joseph, and in 1918 it was time for the next Jacques to take over the property. He became the mayor of Aÿ, but died during the German occupation at the age of forty-seven. The most colorful person in the history of the house is his widow, Lily Bollinger, who kept a watchful eye on every bunch of grapes by cycling through the vineyards regularly. Her rigorous demands for quality still run through the house to this day.

Now Bollinger is run by Jérôme Philipon, who control over 144 hectares, providing 70 percent of the grape supply. The winemaker today is Gilles Descôtes. Besides the house’s exceptional vineyards, they also use very expensive vinification methods. All the vintage wines are fermented in small, aged oak barrels and are never filtered. Malolactic fermentation—which would probably take place very late in the process—is not encouraged either. The reserve wines are stored at low pressure in magnums.

Bollinger make the heaviest and most full-bodied champagnes of any house, and their wines always have a smoky and hazelnut-y complexity that is very hard to beat. The vintage wines are among the very best, but the question is whether the rare and fantastic Vieilles Vignes Françaises, made with grapes from non-grafted Pinot vines, can reach even greater heights. All wines highly recomended.

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Bollinger & James Bond

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1973 LIVE & LET DIE

No mention of the vintage only that it was a bottle of Bollinger. Bollinger has been featured in 13 Bond films in an association that has lasted for 42 years. James Bond’s first encounter with Bollinger, however, was actually a literary one; Tiffany Case sends Bond a bottle to his cabin on the Queen Elizabeth in the novel of Diamonds Are Forever. The first appearance in a film was when then Bond Roger Moore ordered Bollinger from room service in Live and Let Die. From that moment on, Bollinger has been Bond’s Champagne of Choice in every big screen outing.

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1979 MOON RAKER

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger R.D. 1969 201308 70 0 30 95 95
TASTING NOTE ‘For many years a beautiful golden colour and a sensual spectrum in the nose, where flower and fruit aromas are more prominent than usual. Paradoxically fresh and mature at the same time. There is a faint vegetable element in the refined flavour of exotic fruits and popcorn. Several totally exhausted specimens with old dates, unfortunately. Above all Danish cellars should be avoided. Lately a magnificent and fresh magnum enjoyed in Singapore.’

moore_bond_bollinger1983 OCTOPUSSY

BOLLINGER ‘R.D.’

No mention of the vintage only that it was a bottle of ‘R.D.’.

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1985 A VIEW TO A KILL

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger R.D. 1975 201308 70 0 30 96 96
TASTING NOTE ‘For several years the best Champagne I’d drunk. The critics are unanimous—this is a great vintage for Bollinger. Some bottles with the Année Rare label have been too young and closed. The wine is best appreciated two or three years after being disgorged, when its classic hazelnut tones and rich flavor of truffles, cheese, and chocolate appear more clearly in the relatively hard and acidic wine. The aftertaste is majestic, with layers of nut and leather aromas.’

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1987 THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS 

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger R.D. 1975 201308 70 0 30 96 96
TASTING NOTE ‘For several years the best Champagne I’d drunk. The critics are unanimous—this is a great vintage for Bollinger. Some bottles with the Année Rare label have been too young and closed. The wine is best appreciated two or three years after being disgorged, when its classic hazelnut tones and rich flavor of truffles, cheese, and chocolate appear more clearly in the relatively hard and acidic wine. The aftertaste is majestic, with layers of nut and leather aromas.’

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1989 LICENCE TO KILL

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger R.D. 1979 201403 70 0 30 96 96
TASTING NOTE ‘A little over the 90 point line at the launch, later strangely odd. Bottles sold in Sweden showed a troublesome degree of bottle variation. Whether or not this was due to the house, or to careless handling during transport, is something I couldn’t comment upon. Today the wine is back in perfect shape and vigour!’

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1995 GOLDEN EYE

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger Grande Année 1988 201505 75 0 25 94 94
 TASTING NOTE ‘

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1997 TOMORROW NEVER DIES

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger Grande Année 1989 201308 70 0 30 92 92
TASTING NOTE ‘A somewhat unbalanced and over-ripe champagne low in acid. Very mature and stunning, but hardly a classic Bollinger with its sweet honey fruitiness. A bit drier and more classic lately.’

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1999 THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger Grande Année 1990 201305 69 0 31 92 93
 TASTING NOTE ‘

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2002 DIE ANOTHER DAY

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger Grande Année 1995 201308 61 0 39 94 95
TASTING NOTE ‘I chose 1990 R. D. (Recently Disgorged) and Grande Année 1995 to accompany all dishes when I tested a ten-course menu at a top restaurant. It was hardly surprising that both shone as beautiful stars alongside the glittering dishes. The hugely fleshy ’90 better suited the truffle risotto and veal sweetbread on small potato pancakes à la Georges Blanc, but this incomparably gorgeous and subtle ’95 shone both on its own and with the other eight dishes. The wine is wonderfully direct from the start, with a seldom-seen, lemony-elegant fruit of superb Chardonnay combined with a Krug-like oaky complexity. This is hardly the most monumental vintage that Bollinger has ever made, but absolutely one of the most enjoyable and sophisticated.’

1961 BOLLINGER ‘MILLÉSIME”

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger 1961 200301 75 0 25 90 90
TASTING NOTE ‘IVery young, light color. Few nuances, but there’s good stringency and earth-cellar aromas, along with a powder-dry barrel character. Slightly lacking in fruit.’

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2006 CASINO ROYALE

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger Grande Année 1990 201305 69 0 31 92 93
 TASTING NOTE ‘

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2008 QUANTUM OF SOLACE

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger La Grande Année 1999 201312 63 0 37 90 92
TASTING NOTE ‘I hope that it is not a trend to make the vintage wine with more and more Chardonnay. It feels extremely important that the world of champagne still has its strongest Pinot outpost left! Enough of criticism. The 99 is super-gorgeous with lovely balance and easily accessible creaminess, even now with chocolate and nutty undertones. Will certainly keep for a very long time and should, despite its early charm, be stored for at least five more years before being consumed.’

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2012 SKYFALL

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger R.D. 2002 201506 60 0 40 93 95
Beautiful sophistication and youthful beauty. While there is a certain knot device and distinct but faint RD tones thowards mushroom, truffle and mineral saltiness. Blooming in the glass and not unlike a young RD 1975, so at some point will this wine breathe sweetest chocolate and nut symphony. Last incredibly tied and grassy. How can disgorging affect so individual in the bottles?

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of 007’s appearance on screen and the Bollinger / James Bond partnership, Champagne Bollinger launched a limited edition special presentation box. The box includes a bottle of Bollinger La Grande Année 2002. This is a limited box, currenly not available anymore and hard to find.

The presentation box, the design inspired by the shape of a Walther PPK silencer, opens by aligning the three figures 007 and by clicking on the gun logo button, revealing a bottle of Bollinger La Grande Année 2002, the most exceptional vintage in the last decade, according to Mathieu Kauffmann, Cellar Master at Champagne Bollinger.

spectre-motion-poster-2015

2015 SPECTRE

Bollinger (Aÿ) Vintage  Tested  PN  PM  CH  Score  Pot. 
Bollinger R.D. 2002 201506 60 0 40 93 95
Beautiful sophistication and youthful beauty. While there is a certain knot device and distinct but faint RD tones thowards mushroom, truffle and mineral saltiness. Blooming in the glass and not unlike a young RD 1975, so at some point will this wine breathe sweetest chocolate and nut symphony. Last incredibly tied and grassy. How can disgorging affect so individual in the bottles?
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