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A sculpted Champagne, with a steely backbone of acidity swathed in a fine and silky texture, offering rich flavors of baked apple and plum fruit, almond financier, crème de cassis, honey and toasted coconut. Long and mouthwatering, and still very, very young. Drink now through 2090. 1,500 cases made, 200 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 97 WSCompared to the 2000, the 1996 Champagne Femme offers a touch more vibrancy and purity in a similarly rich, layered, complex style. Stone fruits, beautiful minerality, hints of charcoal, as well as a touch of brioche and nuttiness, all flow to a textured, balanced, beautifully long and layered Champagne that’s drinking brilliantly today.Jeb Dunnuck | 96 JD(Duval-Leroy Femme de Champagne Brut) The 1996 Duval-Leroy Femme de Champagne is a stunning wine that is now reaching its apogee of peak drinkability and is wide open and absolutely superb on both the nose and palate. The deep, complex and toasty bouquet offers up a classy mélange of apple, tangerine, pain grillé, a beautifully complex base of soil and a topnote of orange peel. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, complex and toasty, with a superb core of pure fruit, crisp acids, utterly refined mousse, laser-like focus and superb length and grip on the wide open, vibrant and very classy finish. This is just a stunning bottle of bubbly. (Drink between 2012-2035)John Gilman | 95 JGDeep yellow in color the 1996 Femme de Champagne offers a complex, superbly clear, multilayered and fresh bouquet of cooked and roasted apples, citrus flavors, brioche, apricots, a touch of caramel and a hint of farmyard smell. Medium-bodied but full-flavored, clear and complex on the palate this is a stimulatingly and persistently pure, fresh and minerally flavored Champagne with citrus flavors in the aftertaste. Impressively vital and young this delicate but expressive Champagne is lovely to drink today but can be stored for another decade.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 93 RPThe estate’s 1996 Brut Femme de Champagne is really quite pretty in the way it balances some of the more mature notes from extended lees aging with the freshness of the vintage. To be sure, this isn’t a blockbuster 1996, but the Femme de Champagne offers plenty of class and elegance in an approachable, delicate style for the vintage. The rich, radiant fruit flows effortlessly through to the long, satisfying finish. This is a terrific effort from Duval-Leroy. This is Lot L9250N. Disgorged September 7th, 2009.Antonio Galloni | 91 AG
The 2014 La Grande Année is stunning. In fact, it is one of the best recent editions I can remember tasting. What comes through most is the wine’s sizzling energy and tension, qualities that aren’t often associated with Bollinger, where the Champagnes tend to show more breadth and volume. In 2014, readers will find a Grande Année built on linear intensity and drive.The 2014 is a blend taken from 19 villages, 61% Pinot Noir and 39% Chardonnay instead of the more typical 70/30 mix. For the second time in two decades (the first was 2007), Verzenay takes the lead in the Pinots over Aÿ, more or less an inverse from the norm. Verzenay, a north-facing village in the Montagne de Reims that saw less rain than Aÿ and most of the Vallée de la Marne, yields Pinots of energy more than volume. That, married with Chardonnays mostly from the Côtes des Blancs (predominantly Chouilly, Vertus, Oiry and Cramant), results in a truly magical Grande Année that will delight Champagne fans for several decades. I can’t recommend the 2014 highly enough. It’s a total knock-out. Disgorged: April, 2021. Dosage: 8 grams per liter.Antonio Galloni | 98 AGRacy acidity drives this mouthwatering Champagne, enlivening the rich panoply of flavors. Features a fine and creamy mousse that’s still a lively springboard for aromas and flavors of crème de cassis, glazed tangerine, roasted hazelnut, ground coffee, pickled ginger and white blossoms. Long and satiny, with minerally salt and chalk notes gaining momentum on the lasting finish. Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Disgorged July 2021. Drink now through 2037. 1,500 cases imported.WINE SPECTATOR | 97 WSRaised entirely in barrel, the 2014 Champagne La Grande Année Brut is all about finesse and capturing the cool, mineral tension and floral notes of the vintage. Enhancing those qualities, a bit higher proportion of Chardonnay was used for this release, making up 39% of the blend. It pours a pale straw, and it is layered and persistent with lightly toasted pastry, Mirabel plum liqueur, and saline. The palate is dry and more tightly wound at this stage, with driving citrus, a chalky texture, and a light phenolic finish. Subtle undercurrents of honey and butterscotch should continue to evolve beautifully over the coming decades. Drink 2024-2044. Disgorged December 2021, it has 7 grams per liter of dosage. | 97 JDWith the hallmark Bollinger richness that is derived from fermentation in wood and a high percentage of Pinot Noir in the blend, this grand wine is ripe, full of apple and spice flavors. It is drinkable now, but still young. Keep until 2024. ROGER VOSSWine Enthusiast | 97 WEOffering up complex aromas of crisp yellow orchard fruit, confit citrus, frangipane, walnuts, dried white flowers and subtle hints of iodine, Bollinger’s 2014 Brut La Grande Année is medium to full-bodied, pillowy and vinous, with an elegantly fleshy core of fruit that’s underpinned by racy acids and complemented by a pretty pinpoint mousse. Concluding with a long, chalky finish, this is a charming but precise Grande Année that’s more giving and demonstrative than its immediate predecessor, the 2012, but which attains a very similar level of quality in a more challenging vintage—testimony to the serious viticulture that underpins Bollinger’s contemporary excellence.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95 RP‘The 2014 is very closely linked to the cold vintages, which express the characteristics of the different terroirs, the soil, and therefore the minerality,’ explains Denis Bunner, assistantDecanter | 94 DEC(Bollinger “la Grande Année” Brut Millésime (Aÿ)) The 2014 Bollinger “la Grande Année” Brut Millésime is crafted this year from a cépages of sixty-one percent pinot noir and thirty-nine percent chardonnay, with all of the vins clairs barrel fermented in Bollinger’s collection of old casks. The wine was aged sur latte for six and a half years prior to its disgorgement in December of 2021 and finished with a dosage of eight grams per liter. The wine offers up a beautifully refined bouquet of apple, peach, warm bread, a complex base of soil, gentle smokiness, hazelnut and plenty of upper register smokiness. On the palate the wine is crisp, full-bodied, focused and beautifully complex, with a fine core of fruit, excellent soil undertow and grip, elegant mousse and a long, poised and impeccably balanced finish. This is a beautiful wine that is drinking with distinction today, but has decades of life ahead of it. (Drink between 2022-2055) | 94 JG
Very complex nose with a wide spectrum of candied citrus, dried peach and mirabelle tart aromas. Bold and rich, particularly on the mid-palate, but with a great deal of subtlety and delicacy for the vintage. This is already delicious, but at the finish you really taste how this has been made for the long term. Great drive and persistence right at the end. Drink or hold.James Suckling | 96 JSThe 2015 Brut Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill shows off the savory side of the vintage to great effect. Hints of dried pear, sage, mint, dried flowers, lemon oil and chamomile open gradually in this mid-weight, lithe edition of Pol Roger’s tête de cuvée. The 2015 unfolds nicely with time in the glass, but I wouldn’t think of opening a bottle anytime soon. Readers will find a nervy Winston Churchill marked by notable freshness and vigor more than size. This is a fine effort in a vintage that has proven to be far trickier than most observers originally envisioned. Dosage is 7 grams per liter. Disgorged September 2022.Vinous Media | 95 VMA tightly meshed Champagne, with an up-front, broad feel that’s quickly reined in and well-defined by racy acidity. Creamy on the palate, with the fine mousse carrying flavors of crème de cassis, lemon-infused pastry cream, smoked almond and oyster shell. Long, harmonious finish. Drink now through 2038. 500 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 95 WSA strong effort in a less-acclaimed vintage, Pol Roger’s newly released 2015 Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill opens in the glass with aromas of confit citrus, ripe orchard fruits and dried white flowers mingled with hints of honeycomb, freshly baked bread and anise. Medium to full-bodied, vinous and concentrated, with bright acids, chalky structuring extract and a pinpoint mousse, this inherently rather rich, gastronomic Champagne is quite tightly wound out of the gates and will reward a bit of bottle age. Stylistically, it is somewhat reminiscent of a modern-day version of the 1985.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 94+ RP
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