Vieilles Vignes Françaises 2010
Vieilles Vignes Françaises is one of Champagne’s most mythical cuvees, produced from miraculously preserved and ungrafted 100% Pinot Noir vines. Phylloxera destroyed the vines of Champagne in the early 20th century, but amazingly enough two of Bollinger’s classified Grands crus plots, Chaudes Terres and Clos St. Jacques, survived and are still grown the traditional way. Madame Lily Bollinger first had this wine produced in 1969 as an anniversary cuvee to commemorate her 70th birthday. Following the wine’s launch in 1974, Vieilles Vignes Françaises promptly became a collectible and a symbol of a bygone era. Over the decades, its uniqueness and scarcity have made it one of the most sought-after and expensive Champagnes.
In the early 20th century, the vines of Champagne were destroyed by phylloxera. In order to fight the devastating insect, everything had to be replanted using American rootstock. Everything, except two Bollinger plots in Aÿ classified as Grand cru which remained untouched: Chaudes Terres and Clos St Jacques. To this day, these two plots are grown the traditional way, following the ‘provignage’ method, worked by hand and even sometimes with the help of a cart-horse. Bollinger Vieilles Vignes Françaises is a symbol of a bygone era: an extraordinary and moving legacy. The Vieilles Vignes Françaises wine is thought to be the eternal soul of Champagne.
Made in the traditional champagne method, this wine ages on the lees for more than twice the time required by the appellation. It has moderate dosage of 4 g/l and is sealed with natural cork whilst ageing.
At Bollinger, only very high quality harvests become a vintage. The 2010 season was an exceptional one, revealing a very refreshing Champagne that brings out the full impact of the fruit. The parcels of Vieilles Vignes Françaises were harvested on September 15th. In total, there were 1,416 numbered bottles produced for the world.
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.
Vieilles Vignes Françaises 2010 can be paired with the finest dishes but can also help create a special occasion on its own; wine connoisseurs will share it thoughtfully, enjoying the opportunity to try its rare unmatched flavours, if only once… To fully appreciate its unique style, bouquet and aromas, it is best to serve Vieilles Vignes Françaises 2010 between 8 and 10°C. You can enjoy Vieilles Vignes Françaises 2010 right away, or choose to age it in your cellar.
The two remaining pre-phylloxera plots used for this wine are grown the traditional way, following the “provinage” method, worked by hand and even sometimes with the help of a cart-horse.
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Vinous - April 27, 2020 "The 2010 Vieilles Vignes Françaises dazzles from the very first impression with striking aromatic presence and utterly captivating balance. Mirabelle, sweet red cherry, jasmine and passion fruit are some of the many notes that give the 2010 its decidedly racy, exotic personality. The 2010 exudes rare energy for this vintage, which was hardly easy in the field, not to mention real pedigree. It is absolutely unforgettable. I only hope to have a chance to taste it again someday."
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