Before last month’s historic tasting of old vintages of Bollinger dating back to 1830, the year after the house was founded, on our tour of the cellars we saw the restoration work the winemaking team does by hand, using ancient methods.
In this short video we can hear Bollinger assistant winemaker Denis Bunner describing how the winemaking team, working in the cellars, are restoring Jeroboams of Bollinger ‘RD’ 2000. Disgorging the wines by hand (à la volée), tasting them all and then topping them up, before giving them their final cork, all of which is done by hand, using traditional skills.
When Dom Pérignon launches a new vintage, winemaker Richard Geoffroy likes to bring along some other bottles so you can compare and contrast. When I met up with him last month, as well as the soon to be released 2005 vintage, we tried again the so called ‘P2’ 1998 Dom Pérignon, the second release of DP that comes onto the market after further lees ageing (typically another 8 to 10 years) and now really showing its considerable class. We also looked at the latest Rosé release, the 2004, comparing that with the ‘P2’ pink from 1995, fast becoming my favourite vintage of that decade and these days regularly outclassing most ‘96s.
This was a great chance to look at how pink DP develops and evolves and in this short video I ask Richard to talk about the two rosés and their differences.
In an experiment to see the pace at which today’s champagne ages under the Baltic, Veuve Clicquot has sunk a cellar of 300 bottles and 50 magnums of its wines to a depth of just over 40 metres off the coast of the privately owned island of Silverskär. The location chosen is close to where bottles were discovered in 2010 in a shipwreck on the seabed, including several identified as Veuve Clicquot dating from 1839 which had been preserved remarkably well below the deep, dark, cool Baltic waters.
In these short video clips, Veuve Clicquot head winemaker Dominique Demarville explains the idea behind sinking the cellar below the Baltic off the island of Silverskär; why this location was chosen and what the ageing experiment will involve over the next few years.