Champagne Bollinger

La Côte aux Enfants Champagne

Champagne, France

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Established by Jacques Bollinger between 1926 and 1934, La Côte aux Enfants is a steep hillside vineyard located on the outskirts of Aÿ. This unique parcel has been a source of endless fascination, producing some of the most highly prized Pinot Noir in the region. Aware of its potential, it became Champagne Bollinger’s ambition to produce a great vintage Champagne exclusively from this vineyard, with 100% Pinot Noir. The fruit comes from the north-west side of the hill, revealing a particularly refined expression of La Côte aux Enfants vineyard.

Vineyard

La Côte aux Enfants (the Children’s Hillside) was named after the steep slope of the plot from which it is made; legend has it that in bygone times only children were able to climb it. It is defined both by a high elevation but also by thin soils with about 12 inches of top soil above pure chalk, making the wine produced bright and chiseled. As part of the Ay village, it carries the mention “Ay Grand Cru” on the label. It is the third Blanc de Noirs produced by the house, alongside PN and Vieilles Vignes Françaises.

Winemaking

100% Pinot Noir Grand Cru, from the parcel of La Côte aux Enfants. Fermented entirely in aged oak barrels. Sealed with a natural cork and cellar aged for more than twice the time required by the appellation. Moderate dosage, 8 grams per liter.

Vintage

This cool year culminated in sunny, settled weather that led many growers to compensate for the slow start by pushing their harvest dates right into October. This vintage is qualified by an excellent structure and welcoming acidity. A classic vintage, ideal for ageing.

Tasting Notes

To the nose, La Côte aux Enfants Champagne 2013 emanates aromas of mint and ripe fruit, rounded off with aromas of acacia honey and citrus fruit. On the palate, A lively and complex taste with wonderful acidity. Flavors such as lemon, ripe fruit and curry accompany candied red fruit and buttery notes.

Color

White

Grape Varieties

Pinot Noir

Appellation

Champagne, France

Farming

Since 2009, all vines grown on this vineyard plot are organically farmed.

Alcohol

12.5%

Suggested Retail Price

$1500

Reviews

"Heady, racy"

Vinous - July 5, 2023

"The 2013 La Côte aux Enfants is a rich, heady Champagne. Passion fruit, candied apricot, white flowers, vanillin, spice and tangerine oil all race across the palate. Deep and layered, with notable complexity, the 2013 is decidedly racy. Interestingly, the 2013 is much more expressive than the 2012 was at this stage. [...]. Dosage is 4 grams per liter. In just its second release, the La Côte aux Enfants seems headed in a very positive direction." - A.G. 6/23

 

"Hints of sweet strawberries

James Suckling - August 2, 2023

"Complex aromas of pie crust, iron, chalk and hints of sweet strawberries. Some ginseng. Full-bodied with very fine bubbles that give it tension and focus. Extremely fine and polished tannins that go on and on. Dried lemons and oranges. Chalk at the end. Hints of bitterness in the finish with subtle botanicals. Made from a single vineyard monopole of pure pinot noir." - 8/23

 

"Focused and powerful, sculpted"

Wine Spectator - September 22, 2023

"A vinous version, with subtle, savory hints of grilled herbs and tar on the nose, revealing a minerally underpinning to the palate's flavors of black currant, bread dough, saffron, crystallized honey and nuts as they ride the fine, raw silk–like mousse. Focused and powerful, sculpted and well-integrated, with firm acidity. Superlong finish." - 9/23

 

"Crisp peach, beeswax, mocha, warm spices and toasted nuts"

Wine Advocate - December 14, 2023

"While one might have expected the cool, northwest-facing part of this famed Aÿ vineyard to produce a rather unyielding wine in a vintage like this, Bollinger's brilliant 2013 Brut Blanc de Noirs La Côte Aux Enfants is actually easier to understand than the rather more reserved inaugural 2012 release. Unwinding in the glass with aromas of smoky orchard fruit, crisp peach, beeswax, mocha, warm spices and toasted nuts, it's full-bodied, taut and chiseled, with a deep and concentrated core of fruit, a beautifully refined pinpoint mousse and a long, electric finish. All the energy and cut that one could wish for is combined with the house's trademark vinous, complex style to deliver a wine of real character and élan." - 11/23

 

Trade Materials

Other Wines by this Producer

James Bond Limited Edition

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This limited edition cuvée celebrates 2 important milestones. Firstly, it celebrates the historic partnership between Bollinger and Bond. Bollinger has been the exclusive Champagne partner of Bond since 1979, so 2019 marks the 40th anniversary of their relationship. Secondly, it celebrates the release of the upcoming movie, No Time to Die, which will be the 25th movie in the series (and Bollinger’s 15th Bond movie since the start of the partnership).

La Grande Année Rosé

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Lily Bollinger agreed to a Bollinger rosé under one condition, it had to be extraordinary, and that is how La Grande Année Rosé was born. A blend like no other, the wine is as an extension to the House’s prestige cuvée, La Grande Année, as is the subtle marriage between this great vintage Champagne and the addition of red wine from a unique plot, the legendary Côte aux Enfants.

La Grande Année

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La Grande Année: The Great Year. This Champagne is the embodiment of everything that makes Bollinger the producer that stands apart in Champagne. La Grande Année, or LGA, preserves the traditions of the past and symbolizes the word “hand-crafted” so strongly that an overused word suddenly becomes the only appropriate definition.

Special Cuvée

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From vineyard to bottling, Special Cuvée sees such an extraordinary level of care and attention, it is difficult to place within the non-vintage or, really, any Champagne category. It is a Champagne that stands apart.  Within one bottle, all the complexity of flavor, texture and pleasure that Champagne can offer.  Special Cuvée is truly a journey of devotion from Bollinger.

Rosé

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In the same way that Special Cuvée stands apart from non-vintage Champagnes, Bollinger Rosé is an exception for Rosé Champagnes. What is more, it is a relative secret, as Bollinger did not release a non-vintage Rosé until 2008 and the quantity produced is quite limited. The wine begins as Special Cuvée and then Bollinger’s specialty as the Pinot Noir producer in Champagne takes center stage, as the red fruits that join the conversation dance vibrantly, the finish has just a hint of perfectly ripe tannin, and the deep complexity of the wine shines through transparently.

PN

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PN, made entirely from Pinot Noir to underscore the very essence and DNA of the House style, is the first new cuvée added to Bollinger’s permanent range since rosé in 2008. Each release of PN, developed as a series to bring Bollinger’s unique vision of Pinot Noir to light, will showcase a different cru from the base year that highlights its distinctive terroir and taste.

R.D.

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A small revolution in the world of Champagne. In 1967, Bollinger releases R.D. 1952.  There is no comparable Champagne on the market at the time. This bold and brilliant Champagne takes the pillars of what makes Champagne Bollinger so unique, and pushes them to their ultimate level. It is, very simply, a masterpiece.

Vieilles Vignes Françaises

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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.

La Côte aux Enfants

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A stunning and extremely rare, still red wine produced only for the greatest vintages. This wine harmoniously combines 100% Pinot Noir Grand Cru fruit from an exceptional vineyard with traditional Burgundian style winemaking. Historically, Pinot Noirs from Aÿ were the most popular wines of the French court, specifically a favorite of King Henri IV, and La Côte aux Enfants comes from a steep plot just outside of the village. This wine is the purest expression of Pinot Noir, offering a fine, delicate texture in the mouth, and a tautness giving it a beautifully long finish.