Bollinger - La Cote aux Enfants, Ay Grand Cru 2012Rich Mouth Feel
An intense ruby colour.
On the nose, notes of liquorice, morello cherries and elderflower jam which develop toward hints of cocoa.
Bursts of fruitiness on the palate with a rich mouth feel with a beautiful tannic structure; final notes of cherry and kirsch.
Please not that this is not a sparkling wine, it is in fact an example of red wine that could have produced from Champagne a few centuries ago, at the time of their splendour.
La Cote aux Enfants comes from a small plot of 70 acres, located in the heart of the terroir of Ay one of champagne's Grands Crus. Exceptional for its exposure and the quality of its soil, it is exclusively planted with Pinot Noir.
This vineyard is specifically cultivated, with a green harvest that reduces the yield down to 8,500kgs per hectare.
At the harvest, the grapes are sorted 'a la clayette' and the harvest completely destemmed.
Only made from the 'jus de goutte', (Free-run juice), this is the first juice following the running-off of a tank after alcoholic fermentation. It is also called free-run wine. The wine macerates on its skins for 10 to 12 days.
It is then aged for a maximum of two years, in 205 litre oak casks, which are three to five years old.
Originally, Champagne was reputed for... its red wines. It is also said that it ousted the wines of Burgundy from the table of Henri IV. The most renowned were those of Ay and indeed it was usual for all red wines from Champagne to be reffered to as 'Vin d'Ay.
The red coteaux champenois (the denomination that describes still wines from Champagne) from Ay. 'La Cote aux Enfants', therefore constitutes a return to the origins of Champagne. It is only produced in exceptional years from a small plot, 'la Cote aux Enfants', ideally located in the heart of the terroir of Ay and planted with pinot noir.