Champagne village profile: Neuville-sur-Seine in the Barséquanais

Diagram Neuville-sur-Seine 201606Key facts

Located in subregion/area: Côte des Bar / Barséquanais
Vineyards and grape varieties: 315.8 hectares (780.4 acres), of which 84.5% Pinot Noir, 11.7% Chardonnay, 2.5% Pinot Meunier, and 1.3% others.
Classification: “Autre cru” (80%)

Maps

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.

Google Maps view with the villages in the Barséquanais highlighted.

Clicking on a village opens a field to the left with a link to the village profile (if it exists).

Neighbouring villages within the Champagne appellation

North: Buxeuil
Northeast: Celles-sur-Ource (with the main part beyond Buxeuil)
Northeast: Landreville
East to south: Gyé-sur-Seine
Southwest: Les Riceys
West: Balnot-sur-Laignes
Northwest: Polisy (a small strip)

The village

Coat of arms of the Neuville-sur-Seine commune. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (created by Chatsam, 2009).

Neuville-sur-Seine is located in the southern part of the Aube departement, at the Seine river. This area is sometimes called the Seine valley, Vallée de la Seine.

The Neuville-sur-Seine commune has a surface of 1442 hectares and has 425 inhabitants (as of 2013), referred to as Neuvillois and Neuvilloises.

Vineyards

The vineyards in Neuville-sur-Seine are located in various parts of the commune. The main part is located in the northeastern part of the commune, on the right bank of Seine. These vineyards are continuous with those in Gyé-sur-Seine. There are also some vineyards of Seine, in the southwestern part of the commune where most of them are continuous with those in Les Riceys. A small part of the vineyards on the left bank of Seine are located in the western part of the commune. The vineyards in the commune are dominated by Pinot Noir.

The current vineyard surface in the Neuville-sur-Seine commune is 315.8 hectares (780.4 acres). There are 266.7 ha Pinot Noir (84.5%), 37.0 ha Chardonnay (11.7%), 8.0 ha Pinot Meunier (2.5%), and 4.1 ha others (1.3%). Numbers from CIVC, as of 2013. In 1997, the vineyard surface was 232 ha. There are 86 vineyard owners (exploitants) in the commune.

Historical development of the vineyard area and the influence from Phylloxera

The cultivation of vineyards in Neuville-sur-Seine was documented already the the 12th and 13th centuries when the Cistercians at the Mores Abbey, today located in the Celles-sur-Ource commune, had vineyards within the current borders of Neuville-sur-Seine.

A satiric sketch from Punch published in 1890: “The Phylloxera, a true gourmet, finds out the best vineyards and attaches itself to the best wines”. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons.

This area had a significantly larger vineyard area before the Phylloxera epidemic, the “wine louse”, marched across France in the latter part of the 19th century. In the Aube department, the first signs emerged in 1878. In 1865 there were 633 hectares (1564 acres) of vineyards in Neuville-sur-Seine, and in 1882 this number was 504 ha. In 1901 there was 450 ha in the commune, but in 1903 Phylloxera started to hit with renewed force, leading to a fast reduction: about 400 ha in 1904, 300 ha in 1905, and 150 ha in 1906. Extensive replantations were made, but new problems quickly emerged: in 1908 there were 216 ha (of which 77 ha young vines), in 1909  there were 250 ha (of which 75 ha young vines), in 1910 275 ha (of which 50 ha young vines), in 1911 285 ha (of which 40 ha young vines), in 1912 250 ha (of which 50 ha young vines), in 1913 150 ha (of which 5 ha young vines). In this period several vintages were also plagued by weather-related problems. During Word War I there was a further decline: in 1914 there were 156 ha of vineyards, in 1915 there were 125 ha, in 1916 127 ha, in 1918 129 ha, and in 1919 117 ha.

In 1954, the vineyard area was below 100 ha (below 247 acres), in 1997 it had come back up to 232 ha (573 acres), and in 2013 it was 315.8 ha (780.4 acres). A long period of increasing vineyard area over the last several decades is characteristic for all of Aube. Although the currently approved vineyard surfaces of Champagne are now supposed to be more-or-less planted, there is still a long way to the numbers from the 19th century and the very first years of the 20th century in Neuville-sur-Seine in many other villages.

The numbers for years until 1954 are from La vie en Champagne number 17, October 1954.

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.

  • Paul Herard (NM), has 8 ha of vineyards. Several of the Champagnes are 100% Pinot Noir.
  • Philippe Prié (NM, used to be RM), a producer led by Fabienne Prié since the late 1990s that have received positive attention for their quality. Cuvée Archange and Cuvée Mystère, both non-vintage, are composed of 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay. Cuvée Cœur d’Ebène is composed of 50% Chardonnay and 50% Pinot Noir, and is vinified in oak barrels. The vintage Champagne is composed of 50% Chardonnay and 50% Pinot Noir (refers to the 2002 vintage). Cuvée Love Flowers is a special cuvée from the 1999 vintage of the same compostion. Oro is a vintage Champagne from the 2008 vintage composed of 60% Chardonnay and 40% Pinot Noir.

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.

  • Baudry (RM), a member of Terra Vitis with 20 ha of vineyards containing 80% Pinot Noir. The annual production is 70 000 bottles. The range includes a vintage Champagne composed of 50% Chardonnay and 50% Pinot Noir (refers to the 2010 vintage).
  • Jacques Bolland, a member of Terra Vitis.
  • Sébastien Charvot (RC), has 7.5 ha of vineyards, mostly with Pinot Noir. The vintage Champagne is composed of about 70% Chardonnay and 30% Pinot Noir.
  • Cretol & Fils (RM, older website), has 5.5 ha of vineyards with 80% Pinot Noir and 20% Chardonnay. The range includes a vintage Champagne. Also has an address in Gyé-sur-Seine.
  • Deline-Mannoury Thierry (RC, Facebook page)
  • Douge & Fils (Facebook page)
  • Fleurette (RM), whose range includes a vintage Champagne.
  • Cédric Gotorbe (RC)
  • Emmanuel Roussiau (RM), whose range includes a vintage Champagne.

Comment: the list may be incomplete.

Cooperative

When bottles are sold directly by a cooperative the producer status is given as CM = coopérative de manipulation, as opposed to RC when sold by a cooperative member under their own name.

  • Coopérative Vinicole de Neuville-sur-Seine et de Buxeuil is a cooperative in this village, with 112 members having a total of 170 ha of vineyards. In 1951 the numbers were 33 members and 44 ha. The cooperative uses the brand:
    • Clérambault, with three vintage Champagnes in the range: Carte Or which is composed of 50% Chardonnay and 50% Pinot Noir, a Blanc de Blancs, and Grand Epoque which is composed of 40% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir, and 20% Pinot Meunier. However, the most expensive Champagne of the range is Extra Brut, which is composed of 70% Chardonnay and 30% Pinot Noir, with a high proportion of reserve wines.

Other wine producers

  • Philippe Hérard (alternative website) is a producer of non-Champagne sparkling wines, most of them under the designation “Vin Mousseux de Qualité” but without any appellation. The range also includes a Crémant de Bourgogne, which is a Burgundy appellation for spakling wines. The producer also has a cellar in Villedieu about 15 km away in the Côte d’Or department, and therefore in the Burgundy wine region. The wines are basically produced using the “Champagne method” (a term not allowed to be used by other producers) but with a shorter time on the lees: 12 months for most of the range, formerly 9 months.

Links

© Tomas Eriksson 2016, senaste uppdatering 2017-01-21

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