Burgundies from Le Grappin

French-Swedish niche importer Caviste put on a tasting of some red and white Burgundies from Le Grappin, a recently established winery run by an Australian, Andrew Nielsen. I also tasted wines from this producer chez Caviste in August last year.

A somewhat different selection of wines was presented compared to last year, since th 2013 vintage gave so small yields. This has unfortunately been something of a recurring story in Burgundy in recent years, with increased competition for the few bottles (further exacerbated by increased interest from the Asian market) and increasing prices. This means that Martin from Caviste spread his buying over more wines.

Caviste Le Grappin 20150812

2013 Savigny-lès-Beaune Blanc
Chardonnay, three barrels produced in 2013.

Nose with a rather fruity impression with pear, some citrus, some mineral, some white flowers, a hint of oak and butter. The palate is medium bodied with pear and apple with some apple must character, slightly spicy, good acidity, and a fruity aftertaste. Rather approachable now, 87-88 p.

2013 Santenay Premier Cru Les Gravières Blanc
Chardonnay, two barrels produced in 2013.

Nose with apple, hints of citrus, mineral including hints of clay and earth, hints of oak and perfume. The palate is medium bodied (+) with green apple, citrus, mineral, high acidity, and a green-apply aftertaste with minerality. Young, would do well with cellaring, 88-89(+) p.

This wine is clearly most in need of cellaring of the three whites, and then I actually tasted it from a bottle that had been opened a couple of hours.

2013 Beaune Premier Cru Les Grèves Blanc
Chardonnay, two barrels produced in 2013.

Nose with yellow apple, some yellow plums with hints of peach, some oak and butter. The most classical oaked white Burgundy nose of the three. The palate is medium bodied (+) with apple, citrus, mineral, high acidity, and a mineral-packed aftertaste. Younger and firmer on the palate than what the nose indicates, could develop, 89(+) p.

Although this wine could gain from cellaring it is not in as great need of cellaring as the white Santenay Premier Cru above.

2013 Savigny-lès-Beaune Rouge
Pinot Noir from the Aux Fourneaux vineyard.

Nose with cherries, some chalk notes and hints of orange zest. Possible there’s also a slightly green note hovering in the background, but it isn’t too pronounced. The palate is medium bodied with cherries and raspberries, noticeable minerality, high acidity, and an aftertaste with apples, cherries, and some tannin. A firm and young wine that could do well with some cellaring, 87(+) p.

Many red 2013 Burgundies that I have tasted are rather firm with marked acidity, so this wine shows a style that is rather typical for the vintage. The 2012 of this wine had developed quite much in a year (see below), so I venture a guess that this wine will be more accessible already next year.

2013 Beaune Premier Cru Les Boucherottes
Pinot Noir, seven barrels produced in 2013.

Elegant nose with strawberries and cherries, perfumed and flowery notes, and a hint of orange zest. Rather light-coloured fruit component and a complex nose. Palate with strawberries, some cranberries, minerality and a chalky impression, high acidity, hints of tannins, and an aftertaste with apple and raspberries. Rather young, elegant nose, 89-90(+) p.

At current, this wine is more approachable than the red Savigny-lès-Beaune, but I guess its  development curve will be longer.

As a reference we tasted a wine from last year’s release:

2012 Savigny-lès-Beaune Rouge
Pinot Noir, 12 months in oak of which 14% new oak (1 of 7 barrels).

Complex nose with ripe strawberries, some cherries, some orange zest, some flowery notes, and a hint of animal notes. Comes across as rather open. The palate is medium bodied (+) with strawberries, minerality, chalky impression, high acidity, and a mineral-dominated and firm aftertaste with some tannins. A young palate together with a complex and wonderful nose, 88(+)/89 p.

Quite a lot had happened to this wine in a year, and it has now a more complex and “bigger-sized” nose. Last year I scored it 87+ p and wrote “already a year in the cellar could probably do some difference here”, which pleasantly enough turned out to be correct.

Based on these wines my opinion is that the style of Le Grappin is pure and elegant with noticeable acidity, although this is also a vintage character of 2013 Burgundies. The red wines show rather moderate tannins that primarily make themselves felt in the aftertaste. To anyone who thinks this profile sounds like your type of Burgundy, the wines are clearly worth seeking out.

Swedish version of this post.

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Champagne village profile: Grauves, a premier cru in the Côte des Blancs

Diagram Grauves 201508Key facts

Located in subregion/area: Côte des Blancs / Côte des Blancs
Vineyards and grape varieties: 190.8 hectares (471.5 acres), of which 90.7% Chardonnay, 7.6% Pinot Meunier, and 1.6% Pinot Noir.
Classification: Premier cru (95%)

Map

The map is linked from Wikimedia Commons, and the geographical information originates from OpenStreetMap. The dotted white area corresponds to the vineyards, light yellow is other open terrain, orange is built-up areas, and green indicates forest.

Neighbouring villages

North: Cuis, premier cru
Northeast: Cramant, grand cru
East: Avize, grand cru
Southeast: Oger, grand cru
West: Moslins (part of the Côteaux Sud d’Épernay)
Northwest: Mancy (part of the Côteaux Sud d’Épernay)
Comment: more links will be added when profiles of the other villages have been uploaded.

Grauves with surrounding vineyards. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo François Collard, 2009).

The village

Grauves is located some 8 km south of Épernay, on the “back side” of the actual Côte des Blancs slope, in a valley formed by the stream Le Darcy. Le Darcy originates in Grauves and flows to northwest into the area Côteaux Sud d’Épernay. A forested area separates Grauves from the other villages in the Côte des Blancs.

Other than the Grauves village itself, the commune also contains the hamlets of Le Grand Pré, Montgrimaux, and Le Darcy.

The name Grauves is derived from the Latin grava, meaning gravel. A local nickname of the village is “Royal Coteau” since forest surrounds surrounds Grauves on several sides, a bit like a royal crown. Actually, a horse shoe would be a better description of the shape of the edge of the forest around the village, but perhaps too prosaic.

The Grauves commune covers 784 hectares and has 675 inhabitants (as of 2012), referred to as gravriots and graviotes.

The church and graveyard in Grauves with vineyards in the background. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo Quispiam, 2014).

Vineyards

The vineyards in Grauves are located around the village, on both banks of the stream Le Darcy. The slopes vary but include southwest-facing slopes on the right bank and northeast-facing slopes on the left bank. Chardonnay is the dominating grape variety.

The current vineyard surface in the Grauves commune is 190.8 hectares (471.5 acres). There are 173.1 ha Chardonnay (90.7%), 14.5 ha Pinot Meunier (7.6%), 3.1 ha Pinot Noir (1.6%), and 0,1 ha other (<0.1%). Numbers from CIVC, as of 2013. In 1997, the vineyard surface was 185 ha. There are 191 vineyard owners (exploitants) in the commune.

The premier cru status

On the now defunct échelle des crus scale, where 100% = grand cru and 90-99% = premier cru, a smaller number of villages had different numbers for white and black grapes, i.e., for Chardonnay and for Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. Grauves was one of them, with 95% for white grapes and 90% for black grapes, which in both cases meant premier cru status. Grauves has kept this premier cru following the abolishment of the échelle des crus, just like other villages that achieved it.

Single vineyard sites

  •  Les Hautes Roualles is located in the northern part of the commune, high in the slope. Pierre Domi produces a vineyard-designated Champagne composed of 100% Chardonnay from this vineyard.

Champagne producers

Champagne growers

Producer status is indicated where known: RM = récoltant-manipulant, or grower-producers. RC = récoltant-coopérateur, growers that are cooperative members but sell Champagnes under their own name. Smaller producers are placed under this heading when no information regarding producer status is available.

  • Bauchet-Augé (RM)
  • Pierre Cordonnier (RM), has 2.6 ha of vineyards.
  • Courty-Leroy (RM)
  • Pierre Domi (RM), has vineyards in Grauves, Mancy, and Monthelon. The vineyard-designated Les Hautes Roualles from 100% Chardonnay was launched in 2014.
  • Marc Dominé, has 3.37 ha vineyards with 97% Chardonnay and 3% Pinot Noir.
  • Driant-Valentin (RM), member of Vignerons Indépendants with 8 ha vineyards in Grauves and Aÿ. The top Champagnes is called Cuvée des Lys and consists of 80% Chardonnay and 20% Pinot Noir, just as the vintage cuvée.
  • Frerejean Frères was founded in 2005 by three brothers Frerejean Taittinger. The Champagnes come from Grauves but the company address is in Reims.
  • Gaspard-Bayet (RM)
  • P. Guyon (RM) with the company name Guyon Pierre.
  • Pascal Marest
  • Hugues Populus (RM), member of Vignerons Indépendants with 4.8 ha of vineyards. Several of the Champagnes are partially produced using oak barrels.
  • Mathieu-Princet (RM), has about 9 ha of vineyards inGrauves, Bisseuil, Verneuil, Bligny (in the Côte des Bar/Aube), and Bertignolles. The composition of the vintage Champagne varies.
  • Remue-Gaspard (RM), has vineyards in 10 communes in the Côte des Blancs, Vallée de la Marne, and Aube.
  • Ruelle-Lagedamont (RM)

Comment: the list may be incomplete.

Cooperatives

  • Coopérative Vinicole de Grauves is a cooperative in Grauves founded in 1948 with about 200 members with just under 60 ha of vineyards, mostly in Grauves but also in some neighbouring villages in the Côte des Blancs. The Champagnes are sold under the brand:
    • Le Royal Coteau, which has two vintage Champagnes: Brut Millésime consisting of a blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, and Vieilles Vignes Millésime consisting of 100% Chardonnay from old vines in Grauves.

Historically notable Champagnes

  • 1928 Pol Roger Grauves was the first Champagne ever rated 100 points by the notable Champagne critic Richard Juhlin. As it happens, 1928 was a legendary Champagne vintage, and the “regular” 1928 Pol Roger was the favorite Champagne of Churchill.

Links

© Tomas Eriksson 2015

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Champagne city profile: Châlons-en-Champagne

Key facts

Located in: the eastern part of the Champagne wine region, outside the vineyard areas.
Classification: none, there are no vineyards.
Noted for: regional capital of Champagne-Ardenne, home city of the Joseph Perrier Champagne house.

Map

The map is linked from Wikimedia Commons, and the geographical information originates from OpenStreetMap.

None of the neighbouring communes of Châlons-en-Champagnes are Champagne villages, so there are no profiles of the communes/villages on the map.

The city hall of Châlons-en-Champagne, Hôtel de Ville. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo TitTornade, 2014).

The city

Châlons-en-Champagne is the capital of the Marne department (where e.g. Reims and Épernay are located) and in the Champagne-Ardenne region, which also consists of the Ardenne, Aube, and Haut-Marne departements. It is the fourth largest city of the region behind Reims, Troyes, and Charleville-Mézières. Châlons-en-Champagne is located at the Marne river.

Until 1995 the city was called Châlons-sur-Marne.

The Châlons-en-Champagne commune has a surface of 2605 hectares (26.05 km2) and 45,225 inhabitants (as of 2012), referred to as châlonnais and châlonnaises. Some of the neighbouring communes are suburbs, so the continuous metropolitan area is somewhat larger in population. The population of Châlons-en-Champagne has a somewhat decreasing tendency; in the 1970s, the population of the commune topped above 52,000.

The Marne river runs through Châlons-en-Champagne, which means that the city had a good location for Champagne houses during the time when river transport was practical. Here the canal Le Nau, which is formed by an arm of Marne, in the central part of the city. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo Vassil, 2008).

Vineyards

There are no vineyards in the commune since it is located outside the allowed vineyard zone of the Champagne appellation, the zone de production, which consists of 319 communes. The nearest vineyards are located about 18 km away bort, in the southeastern part of the Montagne de Reims.

Champagne producers

Châlons-en-Champagne is located in the zone around the vineyards where grapes and base wines may be treated to produce Champagne, the zone d’élaboration, which is a couple of hundred communes larger than the zone de production.

Châlons-en-Champagne had more producers during the earlier days of the Champagne industry than it does today. A reason was the location at Marne, which facilitated transportation.

Major Champagne houses, members of the Union des Maisons de Champagne

The producer status NM = négociant-manipulant means that purchased grapes can be included in the Champagnes. NM producers can be anything from small producers that supplement their own grapes with some that they buy in, to large Champagne houses that primarily rely on purchased grapes.

  • Joseph Perrier (NM), full name Joseph Perrier Fils & Cie, is a medium-sized Champagne house that today is part of the Groupe Alain Thiénot. Their own vineyards consist of 21 ha on the right bank of the Vallée de la Marne, and which consist of a large proportion of Pinot Noir. The heart of the vineyard holding is the 9 ha that exist in the Cumières area, including Damery and Hautvillers, where they have facilities and a 19th century residence with an impressive park. Red Cumières wines is also used for all rosé Champagnes produced by he house. The largest vineyard holding is 12 ha in Verneuil. Their own vineyards cover about 25% of the annual production of about 800 000 bottles. Grapes are bought in from the Montagne de Reims, Côte des Blancs, and Vitryat areas. Joseph Perrier is one of the Champagne houses that early had a high proportion of exports and continues to have so, today about 70% of the sales. All non-vintage cuvées (Brut, Demi-Sec, Blanc de blancs, and Rosé) as well as the regular vintage cuvée are called Cuvée Royale, in memory of when the house was the Champagne supplier of Queen Victoria and King Edward VII. In connection with the 185th anniversary of the house in 2010, two new vintage Champagnes were introduced,  both with 2002 as their first vintage. They have then been named Esprit de Victoria and has a different bottle form than the previous cuvées. The prestige cuvée is called Joséphine, was named after the daughter of Joseph Perrier’s dotter, and is a vintage Champagne that usually consists of slightly more than half Chardonnay and the rest Pinot Noir.
    History
    The house was founded in 1825, but actually has a background from the 18th century, when François Alexandre Perrier (the father of Joseph) founded the company. 1825 is the year when Joseph took over and put his name on the house. Joseph bought a building that had previously been a post office, where there also was a hill where cellars could be excavated. After five generations of Perrier sons of cousins at the head of the house, it was sold in 1888 to Paul Pithois, a co-worker of Pasteur in his research about the fermentation of wine. After him, the house was managed for some additional Pithois generations, first his sons Pierre and Roger, and in the next generation Georges. In 1994, the house was bought by Laurent-Perrier, and in 1998 by Groupe Alain Thiénot, which also owns the Champagne houses Marie Stuart and Canard-Duchêne. Alain Thiénot is a relative of Paul Pithois, and so is his cousin Jean-Claude Fourmon, who manages the house. The Cumières property was bought in the early 19th century by Alphonse Pithois-Bertin, father of Paul Pithois, and is therefore associated with the Joseph Perrier house since 1888.
  • Also Duval-Leroy (with seat in Vertus) and G.H. Martel (with seat in Reims) have smaller facilities in Châlons-en-Champagne.

Champagne houses that have moved or closed down

  • Beaumet is today a brand used by Château Malakoff in Épernay, which in turn is owned by Laurent-Perrier.
    History
    Beaumet was founded in 1878, and moved from Pierry to Châlons-en-Champagne in the early 20th century. In 1977, the house was bought by  Jacques Trouillard, which laid the foundation to Trouillard’s Champagne house Château Malakoff in Épernay. The activities were moved from Châlons-en-Champagne to Épernay following the purchase.
  • Jacquesson, nowadays located in Dizy, was originally located in Châlons-en-Champagne.
    History
    The house was founded in 1798 by Memmie Jacquesson in Châlons-sur-Marne. From the early years it could be mentioned that Napoleon was fond of their Champagnes, and that Joseph Krug worked for them before founding his own house. Memmie’s son Adolphe Jacquesson took over after him, but Adolphe’s both sons died young and the company was in decline from 1875. Léon de Tassigny, a Champagne broker from Reims, took over from 1925. In 1974, Jacquesson was bought by the Chiquet family and moved to Dizy, where they had vineyards of their own.

Château Jacquesson. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo Garitan, 2011).

  • Albert Le Brun, today a brand used by Charles de Cazanove in Reims. The prestige Champagne Vieille France is still produced.
    History
    The house was founded in 1860 in Avize by Leon Le Brun, and was taken over by Albert in the next generation. The house later moved to Châlons-en-Champagne, according to one source as late as 1975. This was the seat of the house when Francois Le Brun sold it to the US investment company Plantagenet Capital Management in late 1998. The annual production was then about 500 000 bottles, and the purchase included 3 km cellars and the rights to use Salvador Dali paintings on labels. In 2000, the house was sold on to Patrick Raulet (with the company SA Finance du Levant), who in 2003 sold to the Lombard & Médot group (which then was still called Charles de Cazanove). The home address of Albert Le Brun then became Pargny-lès-Reims, where the sister house Médot also had facilities. After G.H. Martel bought Charles de Cazanove from Lombard & Médot later in 2003, the brand Albert Le Brun seems to have been part of the purchase.
  • When Henry Vizetelly wrote his A History of Champagne in 1882, the city also was home to at least Freminet et Fils (Charles Freminet is one of the brands used by Château Malakoff and later De Castellane in Épernay, so it could have been part of the purchase of Beaumet, see above), Dagonet et Fils (today another producer with that name exists in Hautvillers), and Jacquard Frères.

Abbaye de Saint-Pierre-aux-Monts

In Châlons-en-Champagne there used to be a Benedictine abbey by the name Abbaye de Saint-Pierre-aux-Monts which was important for the early development of wine production in Champagne, before the sparkling wines had become the regular style. The abbey was founded in 660 or earlier, and their vineyards are mentioned in the early 12th century. Their vineyard ownership included holdings in the Pierry area, and brother Jean Oudart who was active as winemaker there 1679-1742 belonged to this abbey.

Similar to most other church properties all buildings and land of the abbey were confiscated following the French revolution. The vineyards were auctioned off, and the abbey itself became cavalry barracks that were torn down in 1836.

Abbaye de Saint-Pierre-aux-Monts pictured in the 1854 book by Louis Barbat, Histoire de la ville de chalons et de ses monuments, and should show what the abbey looked like in the late 18th century. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons.

Links

© Tomas Eriksson 2015

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Champagne village profile: Moslins in the Côteaux Sud d’Épernay

Diagram Moslins 201507Key facts

Located in: Vallée de la Marne: Côteaux Sud d’Épernay
Vineyards and grape varieties: 14.7 hectares, of which 58% Chardonnay, 33% Pinot Meunier, and 9% Pinot Noir.

Classification: “Autre cru” (84%)

Map

The map is linked from Wikimedia Commons, and the geographical information originates from OpenStreetMap. The dotted white area corresponds to the vineyards, light yellow is other open terrain, orange is built-up areas, and green indicates forest.

Neighbouring villages

Northnortheast: Mancy
East: Grauves, premier cru (part of the Côte des Blancs)
Northwest: Morangis
Comment: some of the neighbouring villages visible to the south in the map are not included in the list above since they are located outside the Champagne appellation, and therefore don’t have any village profiles.

The village

Moslins is located to the south of Épernay in a valley formed by the stream Le Mancy, as well as on land above the valley. The actual village Moslins is located at the stream Ruisseau des Buzons, which combines with Ruisseau d’Argensolle in the northeastern part of the Morangis commune to form Le Mancy.

The Moslins commune covers 1172 hectares and has 304 inhabitants (as of 2012), referred to as moslinois and moslinoises.

Vineyards

The vineyards in Moslins are located in the northeastern part of the commune, north of the actual village, and consist of east- to southeast-facing slopes. The vineyards are continuous with those in Morangis. Chardonnay is the most common grape variety, with somewhat less Pinot Meunier.

The current vineyard surface in the Moslins commune is 14.7 hectares (36.3 acres). There are 8.5 ha Chardonnay (57.8%), 4.9 ha Pinot Meunier (33.4%), and 1.3 ha Pinot Noir (8,9%). Numbers from CIVC, as of 2013. There are 18 vineyard owners (exploitants) in the commune.

Champagne producers

Champagne growers

Producer status is indicated where known: RM = récoltant-manipulant, or grower-producers. RC = récoltant-coopérateur, growers that are cooperative members but sell Champagnes under their own name. Smaller producers are placed under this heading when no information regarding producer status is available.

  • Roger Benard (RC)
  • By Fernand (RM), has 6.5 ha of vineyards in ten villages: Avize, Oger, Grauves, Monthelon, Mancy, Chavot, Damery, Fleury-la-Rivière, Cormoyeux, and Passy-Grigny.

Comment: the list may be incomplete.

Links

© Tomas Eriksson 2015, senaste uppdatering 2015-08-17

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Champagne village profile: Morangis in the Côteaux Sud d’Épernay

Diagram Morangis 201507Key facts

Located in: Vallée de la Marne: Côteaux Sud d’Épernay
Vineyards and grape varieties: 23.6 hectares (58.3 acres), of which 52% Chardonnay, 41% Pinot Meunier, and 7% Pinot Noir.

Classification: “Autre cru” (84%)

Map

The map is linked from Wikimedia Commons, and the geographical information originates from OpenStreetMap. The dotted white area corresponds to the vineyards, light yellow is other open terrain, orange is built-up areas, and green indicates forest.

Neighbouring villages

North: Chavot-Courcourt
Northnortheast: Monthelon
Northeast: Mancy
South: Moslins
Northwest: Brugny-Vaudancourt
Comment: some of the neighbouring villages visibile to the south on the map are not included in the list above since they are located outside Champagne appellation, and therefore don’t have any village profiles.

The town hall (mairie) in Morangis. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo G.Garitan, 2013).

The village

Morangis is located south of Épernay in a valley formed by the stream Le Mancy, as well as on land above the valley.

The Morangis commune covers 865 hectares and has 351 inhabitants (as of 2012) referred to as morangissois and morangissoises.

Vineyards

The vineyards in Morangis are located in the eastern part of the commune, immediately to the northeast of the village itself, and consist of east- to southeast-facing slopes. The vineyards are continuous with those in Mancy and Moslins. Chardonnay is the most common grape variety, but the proportion of Pinot Meunier is only slightly less.

The current vineyard surface in the Morangis commune is 23.6 hectares (58.3 acres). There are 12.3 ha Chardonnay (52.1%), 9.6 ha Pinot Meunier (40.7%), 1.6 ha Pinot Noir (6.8%), and 0.1 ha other (0.4%). Numbers from CIVC, as of 2013. In 1997, the vineyard surface was 23 ha. There are 21 vineyard owners (exploitants) in the commune.

Champagne producers

Champagne houses/négociants

The producer status NM = négociant-manipulant means that purchased grapes can be included in the Champagnes. NM producers can be anything from small producers that supplement their own grapes with some that they buy in, to large Champagne houses that primarily rely on purchased grapes.

Champagne growers

Producer status is indicated where known: RM = récoltant-manipulant, or grower-producers. RC = récoltant-coopérateur, growers that are cooperative members but sell Champagnes under their own name. Smaller producers are placed under this heading when no information regarding producer status is available.

  • Isabelle Sauron (RM), has vineyards in Chavot-Courcourt, Saint-Martin-d’Ablois, and Vinay. There are also labels with RC, but those with RM seem to be the newer ones.

Comment: the list may be incomplete.

Cooperatives

  • Coopérative Vinicole de Monthelon-Morangis is a cooperative in Monthelon founded in 1947, which also has Morangis in its name. The Champagnes are sold under the brand:
    • Mont-Hauban. The range includes a couple of blanc de blancs, including their non-vintage Cuvée brut Prestige and the vintage Champagne, Cuvée Millésime.

Links

© Tomas Eriksson 2015, last update 2015-08-07

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Champagne village profile: Mancy in the Côteaux Sud d’Épernay

Diagram Mancy 201507Key facts

Located in: Vallée de la Marne: Côteaux Sud d’Épernay
Vineyards and grape varieties: 188.6 hectares (466.0 acres), of which 52% Chardonnay, 42% Pinot Meunier, and 6% Pinot Noir
.
Classification: “Autre cru” (88%)

Map

The map is linked from Wikimedia Commons, and the geographical information originates from OpenStreetMap. The dotted white area corresponds to the vineyards, light yellow is other open terrain, orange is built-up areas, and green indicates forest.

Neighbouring villages

North: Monthelon
Northeast: Cuis, premier cru (part of Côte des Blancs)
Southeast: Grauves, premier cru (part of Côte des Blancs)
Southsouthwest: Moslins
West: Morangis
Comment: more links will be added when profiles of the other villages have been uploaded.

The church in Mancy. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo François Collard, 2009).

The village

Mancy is located south of Épernay in a forked valley formed by the two streams Le Darcy and Le Mancy. The actual village is located on the left bank of Le Mancy. The two streams combine in the northern part of the commune where Le Mancy empties into Le Darcy, after arriving there from the Grauves direction.

The Mancy commune covers 357 hectares and has 273 inhabitants (as of 2012), referred to as mancéens and mancéennes.

Vineyards

The vineyards in Mancy are spread over the commune, on both banks of Le Darcy and Le Mancy. The vineyards in the western part of the commune are located on slopes on the left bank of Le Mancy, and are continuous with those in Monthelon, Morangis, and Moslins. The vineyards in the central and eastern parts of the commune, between Le Mancy and Le Darcy, as well as a smaller vineyard surface on the right bank of Le Darcy, are continuous with those in Grauves. Due to its location in a forked valley, the direction of the slopes vary, but are mostly southeast in the western part of the commune. Chardonnay is the most common grape variety, but the proportion of Pinot Meunier is only slightly less.

The current vineyard surface in the Mancy commune is 188.6 hectares (466.0 acres). There are 98.2 ha Chardonnay (52.1%), 79.2 ha Pinot Meunier (42%), and 11.2 ha Pinot Noir (5.9%). Numbers from CIVC, as of 2013 In 1997, the vineyard surface was 186 ha. There are 48 vineyard owners (exploitants) in the commune.

Single vineyard sites

Single vineyards in Mancy include Les Hautes Norgeailles and Les Bas Putroux that are used by Laherte Frères in Chavot-Courcourt for their Champagne Les Vignes d’Autrefois.

Champagne producers

Champagne growers

Producer status is indicated where known: RM = récoltant-manipulant, or grower-producers. RC = récoltant-coopérateur, growers that are cooperative members but sell Champagnes under their own name. Smaller producers are placed under this heading when no information regarding producer status is available.

  • D’Oliveira-Fransoret
  • Domi-Moreau et Fils
  • Dumez-Bourboin (RC)
  • Roger Fransoret, a producer that was early in practicing organic viticulture.
  • B. Girardin (RM), formerly Bernard Girardin, a member of Vignerons Indépendants with vineyards in the areas Côteaux Sud d’Épernay and Vitryat with 65% Chardonnay, 25% Pinot Meunier, and 10% Pinot Noir. Sandrine Girardin has named the cuvées after musical terms, with Vibrato, a blanc de blancs, at the top.
  • Pernet-Lebrun (RM), with the vintage Champagne Cuvée Authentick Millésimé.

Comment: the list may be incomplete.

Cooperatives

  • Coopérative Vinicole de Mancy is a cooperative founded in early 1948 in Mancy. The background was that the 1947 vintage (which turned out to be excellent) ripened so early that many growers still were unsure that they would be able to sell their grapes when the time came to start harvesting. Three growers who wished to avoid such uncertainty in the future therefore took the initiative to this cooperative. Since 1994, its headquarters is located on the Avenue de Champagne inside Épernay, but vinification takes place in Mancy and their press houses are in three places (Chapelle-Monthodon, Mancy, and Sézanne). The cooperative has 190 members with a total of 113 hectares, and a high proportion of Chardonnay. The cooperative itself also owns 7.5 ha of vineyards in Saint-Agnan (in the Terroir de Condé area, further to the west in the Vallée de la Marne). The annual production is about 1.2 million bottles. The Champagnes are sold under the brands:
    • Esterlin, representing an annual production of about 400 000 bottles. The top cuvée is called Cuvée Cléo and is produced from 100% Chardonnay, while the Cuvée Cléo rosée “de saignée” is produced from 100% Pinot Meunier.
    • Victor Lejeune
    • And at least earlier D’Alencourt.

Links

© Tomas Eriksson 2015, last update 2015-08-17

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Champagne village profile: Monthelon in the Côteaux Sud d’Épernay

Diagram Monthelon 201507Key facts

Located in: Vallée de la Marne: Côteaux Sud d’Épernay
Vineyards and grape varieties: 103.4 hectares (255.5 acres), of which 51% Chardonnay, 43% Pinot Meunier, and 6% Pinot Noir
.
Classification: “Autre cru” (88%)

Map

The map is linked from Wikimedia Commons, and the geographical information originates from OpenStreetMap. The dotted white area corresponds to the vineyards, light yellow is other open terrain, orange is built-up areas, and green indicates forest.

Neighbouring villages

North: Pierry, premier cru
East: Cuis, premier cru (part of Côte des Blancs)
South: Mancy
Southwest: Morangis
West: Chavot-Courcourt
Northnorthwest: Moussy
Comment: more links will be added when profiles of the other villages have been uploaded.

The village

The church in Monthelon, Église Saint-Nicolas. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo October Ends, 2013).

Monthelon is located south of Épernay on the western side of a valley formed by the two streams Le Darcy and Le Mancy. Monthelon is located mid-slope surrounded by vineyards, and is known under the local nickname balcon de la Champagne.

The Monthelon commune covers 266 hectares and has 363 inhabitants (as of 2012), referred to as montheloniers and monthelonières.

Vineyards

The vineyards in Monthelon are located around the village, on the slope formed by the streams Le Darcy and Le Mancy. The vineyards are continuous with those in Chavot-Courcourt and the western part of Mancy. Southeast-facing slopes dominate, but in the northern part of the commune we also find east- and northeast-facing slopes. Chardonnay is the most common grape variety, but the proportion of Pinot Meunier is only slightly less.

The current vineyard surface in the Monthelon commune is 103.4 hectares (255.5 acres). There are 52.4 ha Chardonnay (50.7%), 44.4 ha Pinot Meunier (42.9%), and 6.6 ha Pinot Noir (6.4%). Numbers from CIVC. In 1997, the vineyard surface was 101 ha. There are 91 vineyard owners (exploitants) in the commune.

Champagne producers

Champagne houses/négociants

The producer status NM = négociant-manipulant means that purchased grapes can be included in the Champagnes. NM producers can be anything from small producers that supplement their own grapes with some that they buy in, to large Champagne houses that primarily rely on purchased grapes.

Champagne growers

Producer status is indicated where known: RM = récoltant-manipulant, or grower-producers. RC = récoltant-coopérateur, growers that are cooperative members but sell Champagnes under their own name. Smaller producers are placed under this heading when no information regarding producer status is available.

  • Julien Chopin (RC, alternative web site), has vineyards in Monthelon, Mancy, Moussy, Chouilly, Cuis, and Grauves. The upper part of the Champagne range is called  Les Originelles. The range of four different varietal Ratafias is unusually large, and includes two Pinot Meuniers and one each of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
  • Georges Colin
  • Dérouillat (RM), formerly Dérouillat-Franquet et Fils, has 5.4 ha of vineyards in the Côteaux Sud d’Épernay, Côte des Blancs, and Vallée de la Marne. The range includes Georges-William Secret de Famille, a cuvée with a secret composition, and two blended vintage Champagnes: Cuvée Fanette and Cuvée Cécile.
  • Denis Frézier, has 5.89 ha of vineyards in Cramant, Grauves, Hautvillers, Mancy, Chavot, and Monthelon with 50% Pinot Meunier, 45% Chardonnay, and 5% Pinot Noir. The top Champagne of the range is a vintage cuvée with a majority of Chardonnay.
  • Gaspard-Parmentier (RM)
  • Guelard Denis (RM?), member of Vignerons Indépendats.
  • Michel Guichon
  • Guillette-Brest (RM)
  • J. Guyot (RC), with the company name J. Guyot-Regnault.
  • Alexandre Le Brun (RM), has 3 ha of vineyards in Monthelon, Mancy, Morangis, Chavot-Courcourt, Grauves, Sézanne, Chouilly, and Épernay with 40% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Meunier, and 20% Pinot Noir. Alexandre took over the family property in 2008 but has already received some attention, e.g. for very slow fermentation of the base wines. Below a presentation video from the blog of Jiles Haling, My man in champagne:

  • Jean-Claude Le Brun, has vineyards in Monthelon, Mancy, Cramant, Avize, Oger, Chouilly, and Sézanne.
  • Le Gouive Père & Fils (RM), member of Vignerons Indépendants with 5 ha of vineyards and sales of 30 000 bottles annually.
  • Lecardeur-Gaspard (RM)
  • Lhuillier-Pouyet, the top cuvée of which is a blended vintage Champagne.
  • Marchand & Fils (RC), also A. Marchand & Fils.
  • Didier Marchand & Fils (RC)
  • A. Marchand-Rivierre (RC), with the company name Marchand-Noël
  • B. Marchand-Rivierre
  • Claude Moussé (RM)
  • Guy Muller (RM)
  • Alain Pienne (RM). Also produces the champagne from De Sloovere-Pienne in Brugny.
  • André Pienne (RC), the vintage Champagne is a 100% Chardonnay.
  • Jacques Pienne & Fils (RC)
  • Michel Pienne
  • Sylvain Pienne (RM), has 6.1 ha of vineyards in three villages.
  • Jaques Robert & ses Fils
  • Gilbert Vouillot & Fils

Comment: the list may be incomplete.

Cooperatives

  • Coopérative Vinicole de Monthelon-Morangis is a cooperative in Monthelon founded in 1947. The Champagnes are sold under the brand:
    • Mont-Hauban. The range includes a couple of blanc de blancs, including their non-vintage Cuvée brut Prestige and the vintage Champagne, Cuvée Millésime.
  • Coopérative Entente Proprietaires Recoltants, EPR, is a cooperative in Monthelon.

Links

© Tomas Eriksson 2015, last update 2015-07-31

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