Champagne Bollinger Special Cuvée Brut, Ay, France

60% Pinot Noir, 25% Chardonnay, 15% Pinot Meunier from Bollinger’s vineyards, all in the department of the Marne, home of Champagne’s noble vineyard sites, called crus. Champagne Bollinger holds today 399 acres, of which 12 are grands and 16 are premier crus. The vineyards are planted primarily to pinot noir, the grape that yields the structure and complexity that typify all of Bollinger’s wines. Bollinger adheres to traditional methods, including individual vinification of each amrc and cru. The first fermentation takes place in small stainless steel tanks and oak barrels, with each cru and grape variety fermented, using traditional yeasts, separately. After a cold stabilization and a light filtering, Special Cuvée is kept at 65°F to induce malolactic fermentation, for softness. Once the wine is bottled, the carbonic fermentation and cellar aging are conducted with a metal crown cap for a minimum of 3 years.