Champagne Bollinger’s Wine Libraries are a Hidden Treasure
A bottle of fine wine represents more than just a smooth finish to a delicious meal; its purpose is to seduce all our senses at exactly the right moment, after remaining undisturbed for many, many years. For instance, Champagne Bollinger has just found about 600 bottles that have been deposited within the labyrinthine caves of the brand for nearly a century.
Workers discovered them in a gallery, concealed behind deep stacks of empty bottles, probably closed up between the wars. 53 of them were coded CB 14, which – research revealed – referred to the 1830 vintage, the house’s very first wine, and the most recent bottlings were labeled 1921. This made the discovery a real treasure, from more points of view than one.
These private, subterranean spaces, house the past, present and future of the independent maison, and Galerie 1829 might be the most impressive of them all, with a name honoring the year when the company has been founded, and comprising all the earliest remaining examples of each of the wines Bollinger has ever produced.
Its sister cellar, La Réserve, serves as the repository of over 3,000 reserve magnums, which make their way in new blends to this day. Obviously, these amazing wine libraries are closed to the public, although interested collectors might benefit from special treatment. For instance, a recent group of visitors enjoyed the rare privilege of tasting the 1914 vintage. Jealous much?