Located at the northern edges of France, the history of the Champagne wine region has had a significant role in the development of this unique terroir. The area's proximity to Paris promoted the region's economic success in its wine trade but also put the villages and vineyards in the path of marching armies on their way to the French capital. Despite the frequency of these military conflicts, the region developed a reputation for quality wine production in the early Middle Ages and was able to continue that reputation as the region's producers began making sparkling wine with the advent of the great Champagne houses in the 17th and 18th centuries. The principal grapes grown in the region include Chardonnay, Pinot noir, and Pinot Meunier. Pinot noir is the most widely planted grape in the Aube region and grows very well in Montagne de Reims. Pinot Meunier is the dominant grape in the Vallée de la Marne region. The Côte des Blancs is dedicated almost exclusively to Chardonnay.
In 1927, viticultural boundaries of Champagne were legally defined and split into five wine producing districts- The Aube, Côte des Blancs, Côte de Sézanne, Montagne de Reims, and Vallée de la Marne. This area covers 33,500 hectares (76,000 acres) of vineyards around 319 villages that are home to 5,000 growers who make their own wine and 14,000 growers who only sell grapes. The region is set to expand to include 359 villages in the near future
Champagne wines are exclusively produced from grapes grown, harvested and made into wine within the Champagne delimited region, in France. The grapes used to make Champagne wines possess characteristics not found anywhere else in the world due to the particular geography, soil and climate of the Champagne delimited region.
Champagne wines are produced by natural yeast fermentation in the bottle, in accordance with strict criteria laid down in the Champagne regulatory framework covering every aspect of winemaking.
Champagne Principal rules:
There are just three authorized grape varieties: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier
Vines are short pruned vines (Cordon de Royat, Chablis and Guyot pruning) and there is a Capped grape yield per hectare.
Juice extraction is strictly limited to 102 litres of must per 160 kilos of grapes & the minimum annual required alcohol levels by volume
The natural winemaking process known as the ‘Méthode Champenoise’ occurs after primary fermentation, blending (assemblage) & bottling, when a second fermentation occurs in the bottle.
A minimum of 15 months storage period is required prior to shipping
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