Champagne village profile: Essoyes in the Barséquanais

Diagram Essoyes 201607Key facts

Located in subregion/area: Côte des Bar / Barséquanais
Vineyards and grape varieties: 498.4 hectares (1231.6 acres), of which 86% Pinot Noir, 11% Chardonnay, 2.4% Pinot Meunier, and 1.0% others, including Pinot Blanc.
Classification: ”Autre cru” (80%)


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. The dashed red lines are the departmental borders between Aube (where Essoyes is located) and respectively Côte-d’Or (where Grancey-sur-Ource and Autricourt are located) and Haute-Marne (in the east).

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: Chacenay
Northnortheast: Noé-les-Mallets
Northeast: Fontette
Southeast: Verpillières-sur-Ource
Southsouthwest: Mussy-sur-Seine
Southsouthwest: Plaines-Saint-Lange
Southwest: Courteron
Southwest: Gyé-sur-Seine
West: Loches-sur-Ource
Comment: the remaining links will be added when the profiles of those villages have been posted.

Essoyes and a bridge over Ource. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo Hg marigny, 2009).

The village

Essoyes is located at the Ource river. The area around Ource is referred to as the Ource valley, la Vallée de l’Ource.

The Essoyes commune covers 3557 hectares and has 754 inhabitants (as of 2013), referred to as Essoyens respektive Essoyennes.

Impressionist painter Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) had a house in Essoyes, as well as a studio he used in summertime.

The impressive town hall (Hotel de ville) of Essoyes. The building is called Maison d’Auguste Hériot, was donated to the commune, and also houses a school. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons (photo Hg marigny, 2011).


The vineyards in Essoyes is located both north and south of Ource. Pinot Noir dominates greatly.

The current vineyard surface in the Essoyes commune is 498.4 hectares (1231.6 acres). There are 427.8 ha Pinot Noir (85.8%), 54.0 ha Chardonnay (10.8%), 11.8 ha Pinot Meunier (2.4%), and 4.8 ha others (1.0%), most of which is likely to be Pinot Blanc. Numbers from CIVC, as of 2013. In 1997, the vineyard surface was 399 ha. There are 69 vineyard owners (exploitants) in the commune.

Single vineyard sites

  • Avalon, a south-facing site with a mild slope in the southwestern part of the commune, immediately south of the D70 road, on the border to Courteron. Charles Dufour in Landreville has 0.635 ha in this vineyard, planted to Chardonnay, and produces a vineyard-designated Champagne from here.
  • Les Cognaux, a southsoutheast-facing site in the northern part of the commune. The soil is deep clay and grey marl. Ruppert-Leroy produces vineyard-designated Champagnes from this site, using Pinot Noir.
  • La Fosse, a southsoutheast-facing site with a mild slope in the northeastern part of the commune. Borders in the north to Bas de Grely and Grely. The soil is red clay on limestone. Ruppert-Leroy produces vineyard-designated Champagnes from this site and from Grely, using Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, under the vineyard name Fosse-Grely.
  • Grely, a southsoutheast-facing site with a mild slope in the northeastern part of the commune, on the border to Fontette. Borders in the south to the La Fosse and in the west to Bas de Grely.  The soil is red clay on limestone. Ruppert-Leroy produces vineyard-designated Champagnes from this site and from La Fosse, using Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, under the vineyard name Fosse-Grely.

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.

  • Philippe Guenin (RC), has 17 ha of vineyards.
  • Thierry Mercuzot (RM), has vineyards with 85% Pinot Noir, 13% Chardonnay, and 7% Pinot Meunier. The company name is Val De Sault.
  • Ruppert-Leroy (RM), has 4 ha of vineyards in Essoyes. Received organic certification (AB) in 2013 and biodynamic certification (Démeter) in 2014. The entire current range consists of vineyard-designated Champagnes from four vineyard sites, in some cases in two different versions with the same origin, and are Brut Nature (without dosage). Vinification takes place in oak barrels including larger barrels/vats. Fosse-Grely is composed of 50% Chardonnay and 50% Pinot Noir from the two neighbouring sites La Fosse and Grely. Fosse-Grely Autrement is a 100% Pinot Noir with sulfur, i.e., is a “natural wine”. Les Cognaux is a 100% Pinot Noir. Saignée des Cognaux is a rosé de saignée from 100% Pinot Noir. Martin Fontaine is a 100% Chardonnay.

Comment: the list may be incomplete.

Spring in Essoyes, a painting in typical impressionist style by Auguste Renoir from about 1900. Picture linked from Wikimedia Commons. The original is part of the collections at the Indianapolis Museum of Art.


© Tomas Eriksson 2016, last update 2016-07-26

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