from Bollinger's Grands Crus vineyards, and Verzenay. The grapes' excellence is equalled only by the highest standards of vine-tending until the harvest: choice of optimal maturity, low yield,successive sorting and destemming. Then come the vatting and maturing in wooden barrels. Red wine accounts for 5 to 6% of the Special Cuvee blend giving birth to Bollinger Rose. But a cuvee's singularity amounts to more than the sum of its parts and tasting it reveals the mystery of the Bollinger style. Red wine rocks the tidy order of the Special Cuvee, giving it a power of aromatic affirmation as well as a freedom of tone and spirit, a sparkle and a particular presence. The colour of Bollinger Rose combines the rich bronze highlights of the Special Cuvee and the intense depth of the red wine. This could be the tint of the raw flesh of wild salmon barely reddened over charcoal. It is a light and a depth. It is the colour of a great wine. The wine reveals all the fullness of expression of the Special Cuvee to the nose. All Bollinger is there: presence and modesty, power and delicacy. And yet other notes come to the fore in the mouth: small wild berries in the countryside on hot summer afternoons. Raspberries, blackberries, gooseberries, the first note of acidity is jolted by the sensuousness of the flesh. An impertinent flavour dances in the mouth, but the lively, joyous sparkle of the fruit is always contained by the wine's precise structure, which gains in fullness and climaxes with mellow notes that stay on the palate and resound in the memory for a long time.