Founded in 1829 by Jacques Bollinger, Paul-Joseph Renaudin and Admiral de Vilermont, the company came into it's own in the 20th century with Lily Bollinger at the helm. Bollinger's signature style was delveloped during Lily's tenure and it's rich, oak-aged, Pinot dominant style has many dedicated fans.
A new core release from Bollinger is a rare thing (there hasn’t been one since 2008) but October 2020 sees the launch of Bollinger’s brand new and very limited PN Series. Each year a new Bollinger PN will be released with a different pinot noir Grand Cru vineyard making up the majority of the blend. The idea is to each year ‘showcase’ the flavours, style and impact of pinot noir from a specific vineyard on the Bollinger house style.
100% Pinot Noir (Blanc de Noirs). Main origin: Verzenay. Other villages: Aÿ, Bouzy and Tauxières.
Base wine: 2015.
“Bright and vibrant on the palate, the PN VZ 15 captures all of the Pinot richness that is such a Bollinger signature but with the freshness and verve that make Pinots from Verzenay so distinctive. Rich red fruit, mint, dried flower and spice notes play off bright acids and veins of saline-drenched minerals in a display of aromas, flavors and textures that dazzle all the senses. Think of it as a baby VVF, but with the tension of Verzenay. The blend is approximately 50% Verzenay and 50% Aÿ, Bouzy and Louvois, done about half in steel and half in oak. This release is based on the 2015 vintage (50% of the blend), with reserve wines that go back to 2009, including 20% from the reserve magnums Bollinger is so famous for. This bottle was disgorged in November 2019 and dosage is 7 grams per liter, about average for Bollinger today. As I have written before, many of Champagne’s big houses have embraced the ambitious spirit of grower Champagne with their recent bottlings, wines that often place more emphasis on variety and place than the flagship blended cuvées that are the core of what Champagne has represented in the past. This is yet another example. The new PN VZ 15 is superb, and sharply priced as well, something that is not often the case with new grande marque Champagnes these days. Don’t miss it.”
94 pts Antonio Galloni