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Bollinger

One of the last remaining independent champagne houses, Bollinger was founded in 1829 in Ay, and had been family managed until recently, when in 2008 they appointed a new chairman, Jérôme Philipon. He succeeded Ghislain de Montgolfier, the great-grandson of founder Joseph Bollinger. The "Bolly" as it is known in the UK has always attracted the privileged: Queen Victoria was a fan, just like many 007 agents on the big screen. In real life, for many it was made famous by the elegance and perfection of Madame Bollinger, who was quoted saying: "I only drink champagne when I'm happy and when I'm sad. Sometimes I drink it when I'm alone. When I have company I consider it obligatory. I trifle with it if I'm not in a hurry and drink it when I am, otherwise I never touch the stuff unless I am thirsty." The winery cultivates more than 160 hectares of vineyard with mainly Pinot Noir, but also Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier and is notable for its first fermentation, which is carried out in oak even today. Annual production of 100,000 cases.