Champagne Bollinger and Champagne Ayala are both run and operated by the Bollinger family and have been creating the region’s finest champagnes for generations. These exceptional cuvees are perfect for elevating all your reader’s holiday celebrations. Whether served at a holiday party, as a housewarming gift or popped to ring in the new year, these champagnes are sure to add a touch of French elegance to your holiday fêtes.
Below, I’ve included a selection of exquisite Brut and Rosé champagnes from Bollinger and Ayala for your consideration for Thanksgiving, holiday gift guides, and New Year’s Eve coverage and beyond! These wines selected below range from $55 – $300, providing an option for every occasion. Please let me know if I can share additional information or assets for your coverage. Select samples are available upon request and high-res imagery are available here for download.
Champagne Ayala Brut Majeur NV
Brut Majeur is the epitome of a non-vintage brut from a great, historic House and is the finest ambassador for the House’s freshness and elegance. A blend of Pinot Noir (40%), Chardonnay (40%) and Pinot Meunier (20%). Pinot Noir and Chardonnay bring vinosity and delicacy together in a harmoniously balanced blend. The complement of Pinot Meunier adds a touch of fruitiness and liveliness.
Champagne Bollinger Special Cuvée NV
From vineyard to bottling, Special Cuvée sees such an extraordinary level of care and attention that it is a Champagne that stands apart. In 1911, Georges Bollinger’s British agent gave him the idea for the name Special Cuvée – “special” written the English way, without an accent. He thought the French expression “Brut sans année” was no match for such a subtle champagne. A combination of structure, length and vivacity gives way to bubbles like velvet, notes of pear and fresh walnut with brioche and spicy aromas.
Le Blanc de Blancs 2014 Champagne
Right from the start, this wine is fresh and lively, followed by a broad and appetizing palate of white fruit and acacia honey with subtle pastry and brioche overtones. The finish is long and persistent, revealing a touch of chalky minerality, a signature of the Côte des Blancs, along with hints of grapefruit, blood orange and a delicate salinity. Ayala’s Le Blanc de Blancs 2014 is 100% Chardonnay, produced in small quantities in exceptional years only and fully expresses the superb caliber of great Chardonnay from the best Crus of the Côte des Blancs.
Champagne Bollinger R.D. 2007
A signature since its inception, R.D. has had a lasting impact on the Bollinger style. This vibrant Champagne takes the pillars of what makes Champagne Bollinger so unique – mastery of time and rarity – and pushes the craft to its ultimate level. The 2007 vintage offers an extraordinary contrast of freshness and complexity from age. As an homage to that legendary first vintage edition of R.D., the newest bottling bears a redesigned label, harkening back to the original 1952 bottle edition with the same material and mythical lettering and font.
Rosé Majeur is the perfect embodiment of the originality and finesse of the House’s wines. Made predominantly from Chardonnay, it is crafted with the addition of a small proportion of still Pinot Noir from the best crus of the Montagne de Reims. A low dosage enables it to express the House style, both feminine and generous, with great elegance. The very high proportion of Chardonnay and the aging process result in a Champagne with remarkable finesse.
This wine begins its life with the same meticulous vineyard and harvesting processes as the Special Cuvée but diverges in the cellar with the addition of 5-6% still Pinot Noir. This small addition becomes symbolic of Bollinger’s specialty as the Pinot Noir house; the still red wine is so powerful that only half of what is normally used in a typical Rose champagne is required. The house’s signature style takes the center stage: red fruits join the wine’s conversation and dance vibrantly into a finish that has just a hint of perfectly ripe tannin and the deep complexity of the wine shines through transparently.