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La Grande Année is the Prestige Cuvée of Champagne Bollinger. It is only produced when exceptional quality harvests occur, and is the expression of Bollinger's experience and expertise. More than the illustration of the vintage, La Grande Année is the result of the Bollinger style, of its exceptional terroir and traditional wine making techniques. La Grande Année possesses a beautiful rounded structure and combines rich, complex and intense aromas. These wines express sincere vinosity and intense aromas that depict the conditions of that particular vintage.
In 1976, Bollinger Vintage became Grande Année; then, in 2004, "La" Grande Année… A name simple enough to illustrate its exceptional status: because only truly extraordinary years become vintage at Bollinger. La Grande Année made its screen débuts two years later, in James Bond’s Casino Royale.
This sunny and hot drought year with record heat levels across Europe led to a very early harvest, which began on September 1st. Large yields (averaging 10,359 kg/ha) of super ripe fruit produced rich and powerful champagnes, although relatively low in acidity (averaging 7.2 g/l). The acidity levels made some winemakers doubt the wines' longevity but this has since been proven wrong by a multitude of majestic 1976 Champagnes defying time. The style is unashamedly ripe, big and even fatty with plush fruitiness. By no means ‘classic' in style but nevertheless great and a forefather to the warm vintages we are experiencing now. Bollinger R.D. 1976 from magnum for example, is something to behold. Other magnificent cuvées include Philipponnat Clos des Goisses, Dom Pérignon Brut and P3, Perrier-Jouët Belle Époque, Piper-Heidsieck Rare and Taittinger Comtes de Champagne.