Champagne village profile: Congy in the Val du Petit Morin

Diagram Congy 201510Key facts for Congy

Located in subregion/area: Côte des Blancs / Val du Petit Morin
Vineyards and grape varieties: 78.4 hectares (193.7 acres), of which 50% Pinot Meunier, 28% Chardonnay, and 22% Pinot Noir.
Classification: “Autre cru” (85%)

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, green indicates forest, and blue/purple is water and wetland.

Neighbouring villages

Northeast: Fèrebrianges
Northeast: Étoges (beyond Fèrebrianges, but continuous with the northern part of Congy)
Eastsoutheast: Vert-Toulon
Southsoutheast: Coizard-Joches
South: Courjeonnet
Southsouthwest: Villevenard
West: Baye
Comment: several of the communes on the map (in particular to the northwest) are not part of the Champagne appellation and therefore don’t have any village profiles.

The town hall of Congy together with an older halle. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo G.Garitan, 2014).

The village

Congy is part of a string of villages located along a mild slope in the Val du Petit Morin (to the southwest of Côte des Blancs proper), a short distance above the small river Le Petit Morin.

The Congy commune covers 1747 hectares and has 235 inhabitants (as of 2012) som kallas conginois respektive conginoises.

Vineyards

The main part of the vineyards in Congy are located immediately to the north of the village, in a block continuous with those in Fèrebrianges. In this block, mild south-facing slopes dominate. There is also a block in the southern part of the commune, which is mostly made up of mild southwest-facing slopes. Pinot Meunier is the most common grape variety, but there is also a decent proportion of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

The current vineyard surface in the Congy commune is 78.4 hectares (193.7 acres). There are 39.0 ha Pinot Meunier (49.7%), 22.3 ha Chardonnay (28.4%), and 17.1 ha Pinot Noir (21.8%). Numbers from CIVC, as of 2013. In 1997, the vineyard surface was 76 ha. There are 49 vineyard owners (exploitants) in the commune.

Single vineyard sites

In Congy there are several sites with clayey topsoils on limeston which also contains a proportion of black flint.

  • Les Enfers is a site with east-facing slopes.
  • Les Roises is a site with south-facing slopes. Ulysse Collin produces a vineyard-designated Chardonnay from this site.

Château de Congy. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo G.Garitan, 2014).

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. ND = négociant-distributeur, which means that they at least partly sell Champagnes produced by someone else, but under their own name.

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. SR = société de récoltants, owned by a number of growers of the same family and sells under its own name.

  • Breton Fils (RM), member of Vignerons Indépendants with 17 ha of vineyards in 11 villages, including a part in the Grande Vallée de la Marne (Aÿ and Mareuil-sur-Aÿ). The annual production is about 160 000 bottles. Has a wide range with several different cuvées; the vintage Champagne is a 100% Chardonnay (refers to the 2003 and 2004 vintages). Also sells Champagnes under the brands:
    • Bruut, a Dutch cooperation featuring “styled” bottles.
    • Bussy, a Swiss cooperation.
    • Philippe Cherel
    • De Roval, in another Swiss cooperation in which the bottles get metal labels and luxurious metal decorations shaped like fleurs de lys (French lilies) and diamonds. The look can be seen in the video below.
    • Niels, together with a Belgian wine dealer.
    • Pierre Roman

  • Robert Brulfert
  • Brulfert-Duvat (RM)
  • Charbaux Frères (SR), the vintage Champagne is a Blanc de Blancs. Also sells Champagnes under the brand:
    • Edmond de Biscane
  • Paul Charpentier (RM)
  • Joseph Chevreau (RM)
  • Clement & Fils (RM)
  • Ulysse Collin (RM) is one of the small growers in the entire Champagne region who has established itself the fastest as a top name after starting to produce their own Champagnes. Has 8.7 ha of vineyards in Congy and Vert-Toulon (“Vert-la-Gravelle”), but not the entire vineyard area is used for Champagnes under the own label, at least not so far. The Champagne are produced in a quite concentrated style, but still have a lot of freshness and fine balance, and they are given a rather distinct oak treatment (about one year), but it is an oak barrel treatment that doesn’t give an oxidative result and that ends up in very fruity Champagnes. Since the 2008 vintage, the range has consisted only of vineyard-designated varietal Champagnes. Les Roises is a Chardonnay from Congy. Les Enfers (which I so far haven’t seen a Champagne from) is also in Congy. Les Pierrières is a Chardonnay from Vert-Toulon. Les Maillons is a Pinot Noir from the Sézanne are. From the 2011 vintage, Les Maillons has also been produced as a rosé. Ulysse Collin owns 2.5 ha of the total 6 ha in Les Maillons. On  Ulysse Collin’s bottles, the vintage is indicated with a code on the back label, since they haven’t always spent enough time on the yeast to formally be a vintage Champagne.
    History
    Olivier Collin is the man behand Ulysse Collin, and 2001-2003 he was training under Anselme Selosse. In 2003, he retook 4.5 ha of vineyards that had been leased out during several years (to Pommery), with the aim to produce his own Champagnes from the family domaine. Due to frost problems in the 2003 vintage, 2004 was the first vintage under his own label. The first Champagne was called Blanc de Blancs Extra Brut, originated from the Les Perrières vineyard, and the 2004 was released in the autumn of 2007. In 2005, he got back an additional 4.2 ha of vineyards (also from Pommery) that had been been leased out by members of the family. A Blanc de Noirs was added in the 2006 vintage, and originated from the Les Maillons vineyard. From the 2008 vintage, the former non-vineyard-designated Champagnes disappeared from the range.

    A blog post about a tasting in the autumn of 2013 with several Ulysse Collin Champagnes.
    A blog post from a tasting in late 2013 with additional Ulysse Collin Champagnes.
  • Robert Desbrosse (RM)
  • Girost-Moussy (RC), which belongs with Sébastien Girost below.
  • Sébastien Girost (RM), which belongs with Girost-Moussy above. This name is used for the cuvées that have been added since 2002, are classified RM and partly oak barrel treated.
  • Jacky Moussy (RM), has 2.5 ha in Congy, Villevenard, and Bergères-sous-Montmirail with 1.35 ha Pinot Meunier, 0.70 ha Pinot Noir, and 0.45 ha Chardonnay.
  • Maurice Moussy (RM)
  • Yvon Moussy
  • Savry-Pernet
  • André Truffaut (RM)

Comment: It is not certain that the list is complete.

Links

© Tomas Eriksson 2015, last update 2016-03-24

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