Ranked #8 of 137 N/V Pinot Noir Chardonnay Pinot Meunier from Champagne
Absolutely delicious wine with roasted apple, brioche and nutty flavours. Beautifully integrated and wonderfully harmonious wine with an intriguing array of subtle flavours supported by perfect acidity.
Drink: 2018 to 2021
92 Points Robert Parker
Bollinger's NV Brut Special Cuvée is a blend of 60% Pinot Noir, 25% Chardonnay and 15% Pinot Meunier, and the grapes are mostly (more than 85%) sourced in Grand Cru and Premier Cru villages. The majority of the Special Cuvée is reserve wines, part of which have been aged in magnums for five to 15 years. The disgorgement I tasted in May 2018 displays an intense golden-citrus color and has a refreshing, concentrated bouquet of citrus fruits, sweet cherries, ripe apples, white flowers, toast, walnuts, ripe apricots and peaches, with just a touch of brioche. On the palate, this is an intense, very elegant and refined cuvée with a very long, refreshing, intense, aromatic and salty finish. This is an excellent Champagne with a beautiful chalky texture in the aftertaste. (Tasted from lot L1711802 in May 2018.)
Source: Robert Parker (Robert Parker Wine Advocate) by Stephan Reinhardt. June, 2018
91 Points Robert Parker
Disgorged in the second half of 2019, the latest release of Bollinger's NV Brut Special Cuvée is based on the 2015 vintage, complemented by around 60% reserve wines. The wine is still quite tightly wound after its recent disgorgement, opening in the glass with notes of crisp yellow orchard fruit, freshly baked bread, clear honey and orange peel, with little sign of the nuttiness to come with bottle age. On the palate, it's medium to full-bodied, muscular and incipiently textural, with a deep core, ripe acids and a pinpoint mousse. This isn't the most incisive vintage of Special Cuvée, but it's powerful and vinous and will have fine gastronomic potential with a little bottle age.
Source: Robert Parker (Robert Parker Wine Advocate) by William Kelley. March, 2020
91 Points Robert Parker
Disgorged six months ago, the latest rendition of the NV Brut Special Cuvée was bottled in 2015, and while its core derives from the 2014 vintage, it contains fully 60% reserve wines. The wine wafts from the glass with a classic bouquet of apples, pear, walnut oil and clear honey, followed by a medium to full-bodied palate that's broad-shouldered and Pinot Noir-driven, with a pinpoint mousse, nice tension at the core and a delicately chalky finish. Gilles Descotes commented that one of his biggest challenges is finding enough wine raised in wood to make the Special Cuvée in years where Grandé Année is produced—and to that end, Bollinger is significantly expanding its barrel program to ferment even more base wine in used oak.
Source: Robert Parker (Robert Parker Wine Advocate) by William Kelley. April, 2019
91 Points Robert Parker
The NV Brut Special Cuvee is fabulous. Hints of pears, pastry crust and hazelnut lead to an expansive core of fruit. There is plenty of the signature Bollinger oxidative style in this rich, enveloping Champagne. Once again the Special Cuvee is one of the best Champagnes in its price range. This is Lot L114501. Disgorged April 26, 2011. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2015.
Source: Robert Parker (Robert Parker Wine Advocate) by Antonio Galloni. October, 2011
96 Points Tyson Stelzer
The complexity and richness of Special Cuvée is unparalleled among the entry non-vintage blends of every champagne
house, short of ascending to the mesosphere of Krug. Its grand recipe explains why, built on incredible depth of 50–
60% reserves. The house declines to volunteer the reserve composition of each release, which is disappointing and
counterintuitive, being one of its strongest points of difference. As an indication, the most recent blend laid in the cellar
comprises less than 40% of 2018 and an enormous 60%+ of reserves – the majority from 2017, with eight older vintages,
the oldest from reserve magnums. A massive total of 400 wines in all. The 2013 base boasts more than 50% reserves.
This is the finest Special Cuvée since the stunning 2008 base five years ago – and it just might top that monumental
wine! Triumphant complexity is a given at Bollinger, but it’s dynamic freshness and vitality that really set apart the
very best releases. Its exceptional refinement and pristine articulation of the gorgeous red cherry personality of
pinot noir take it to another level, epitomising the character, freshness and chalk mineral definition of this beguiling
grape more eloquently than ever before. It resonates with all of the exceptional depth of pinot noir treated to deep
reserves, in a universe of complexity, spanning light years of black cherries, red apples, pears, figs and a panoply
of spice. Layers of character emerge from the woodwork, reverberating with Bollinger’s signature notes of ginger,
toasted brioche, mixed spice, roast nuts and honey. For all this, it upholds achingly pristine brightness of lemon
zest and grapefruit, at every moment freshened and enlivened by the prominent chalk minerality of its fabled
terroirs, culminating in a masterful crescendo of fine, frothing, salt and iodine-infused minerality. More refined
and multifaceted than ever, Special Cuvée remains one of the finest entry NVs on the planet. Readily available and
affordable, I recommend it more often than any other.
Source: Tyson Stelzer, Wine Taste.
The NV Brut Special Cuvee is fabulous. Hints of pears, pastry crust and hazelnut lead to an expansive core of fruit. There is plenty of the signature Bollinger oxidative style in this rich, enveloping Champagne. Once again the Special Cuvee is one of the best Champagnes in its price range. This is Lot L114501. Disgorged April 26, 2011. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2015. Source: Robert Parker (Wine Advocate) November, 2011 by Antonio Galloni