“Champagne only comes from Champagne, France.”
Belle Epoque- Started the
world exhibition in 1889
La Champagne (the province)
Champagne is not merely a type of wine; it is a special region
90 miles northeast of Paris with a long tradition of
winemaking expertise. In this unique location, one-of-a-kind
cool climate and chalky soil combine to produce the only
grapes in the world can yield the Champagne of legends.
From vine to glass, the Champagne region’s distinctive
history, land, climate, and strict regulations blend together to
create the one and only sparkling wine that can bear the
(source: http://www.champagne.us/Champagne/uploads/CIVC_poster_v4.pdf accessed on 14/04/2010 at 12:00pm)
Champagne Viticole (the wine- producing area)
The viticulture boundaries of Champagne are legally defined
and split into five wine producing districts within the
administrative province with the vineyards spread over an
area of approximately 80,000 acres of which about 75,000
acres are actively used for grape growing.
http://www.champagne-civc.in/champagne/champagne.php accessed on 25/08/09 at 2:57pm;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Champagne_(wine_region) accessed on 11/04/2010 at 7:28pm)
The five main regions:
La Montagne de Reims:
lies along the slopes between the plateau and the valleys
of the Ardre and the Vesle throughout a National Regional
Has deep layer of crustaceous chalk under a thin layer of
topsoil- perfect for grape growth
Boosts of several Grand and Premier Cru wines
Primary grape variety: Pinot Noir
La Côte des Blancs:
• the vineyards from Epernay (in the north) down to the town
• chalky subsoil
• Primary grape variety: Chardonnay
La Vallée de la Marne:
vineyards lie on both sides of Marne River, following its
curves as it meanders from Aÿ to beyond ChâteauThierry.
predominantly chalky area with a thin layer of topsoil
which provides perfect drainage for the vines and also
an excellent base which reflects the heat of the sun to
help ripen the grapes
largest grape-growing district.
Primary grape variety: Pinot Meunier
La Aube (Côte des Bars and Montgueux)
• Vineyards situated south of Epernay, near the city of
Troyes in the low hills between the river Seine and the
• Primary Grape variety: Pinot Noir
La Côte de Sézanne
• Sézannais is a rapidly developing area16kms southwest
of Côte des Blancs.
• Primary grape variety: Chardonnay
(source: http://www.champagne.us/index.cfm?pageName=terroir_geography accessed on 14/04/2010 at 11:57am)
• The Champagne wines owe their inimitable character to
the unique terroir of Champagne. The region was--and
still is--a difficult place to produce still wine.
• The climate(continental and oceanic) is such that grapes
struggle to ripen and the basic wines that are produced
are extremely thin and acidic. The weather is kind
enough to make potable still wine only two or three years
• The mainly limestone subsoil provides the vine with
constant natural irrigation. Limestone is conducive to
good drainage, chalk is an excellent water reservoir and
Le Champagne (the wine)
• Champagne has been lauded in poetry for centuries and
celebrated in song. It has been called the ordinary wine of
Kings as well as the Devil's wine because of its explosive
• The sparkle in Champagne was neither discovered nor
invented, it is a natural phenomenon that occurred when
Champagne was put into bottles. The result is an elegant
sparkling wine with myriad tiny, gentle bubbles, complexity
of flavors, and a lengthy finish.
(source: http://www.champagne-civc.in/champagne/champagne.php accessed on 25/08/09 at 2:55pm)
The typical blend of Champagne is two-thirds black grapes
(Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier) and one-third white
• Pinot Noir: A black grape variety with white juice grown
mainly on the slopes of the Mountain of Reims and Cote
des Bar.accounting for 35% of the acreage, it gives
Champagnes their aromas of red fruits, as well as their
strength and body.
• Pinot Meunier: Another black grape variety with white
juice. It is grown mainly in the Valley of Marne and is
characterized by its suppleness and spiciness. It gives
Champagne its roundness and fragrance. It is easier to
grow and is less prone to frost damage. Accounts to 40%
of the total acreage.
• Chardonnay: the rest 25% plantation is this white grape
variety mostly planted in the Cote des Blancs. It provides
the wines with their finesse as well as their floral, and
sometimes mineral overtones.
(source: http://www.champagne.us/index.cfm?pageName=appellation_grapes accessed on 14/04/2010 at
Other Grape Varities
• The vines of Champagne are monitored strictly. The authorized
three pruning systems are designed to limit the yield of the
vines and to ensure that the grapes grow close to the ground.
• From the winter until August, successive tasks include pruning,
ploughing, tying, de-budding and finally trimming. Much of this
is done by hand. The weather decides the dates of the harvest,
which varies according to the village and the grape varieties.
• Typically, the harvest takes place in Autumn, a hundred days
after the flowering of the vine. During the harvest, grapes are
carefully picked by hand and sorted to remove any damaged
fruit. Only the best bunches are picked and as quickly as
possible, the grapes are then pressed in large low presses.
• Once a generation, the vines of Champagne are
replanted in order to guarantee strong, high-quality
harvests. While older vines do exist, the average age of
a vine in Champagne is approximately 20 years of age.
(source: http://www.champagne.us/index.cfm?pageName=appellation_vines accessed on 14/04/2010 at 11:28am)
• Throughout the year, growers must be mindful of the
hazards of fungal disease and early spring frost.
( source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Champagne_(wine_region) accessed on 11/04/2010 at 7:32pm)
La Saint Vincent: Honors the patron saint of growers on
January 22nd. Dressed in traditional clothes and carrying
colourful staves bearing the statue of Saint Vincent, the
growers walk in procession to a solemn mass in each village.
Afterwards, they discuss the merits of the past harvest and
also pray for plentiful future harvests at a traditional banquet.
Le 'Cochelet': Celebrates the last day of the harvest.
Growers and grape pickers gather for a feast of potée
champenoise, a traditional local dish of meat, cabbage, and
acessed on 14/04./2010 at 11:26am)
Producing Sparkling Wines
There are typically 4 ways of producing Sparkling Wines
• The Methode Champenoise (the Methode Traditionel)
• “Transvasage" method
• “Cuve Close”
• Simple injection of carbon dioxide (CO2)
(source: http://www.execellars.co.uk/images/SpkWineMaking.GIF accessed on 15/04/2010 at 11:15pm)
How Champagne is made ?
Disgorgement and Dosage
Refer foot notes for detailed explanation
Champagne Styles and
Blanc de Blancs
Blanc de Noirs
(Brut; Extra Sec; Sec;
Refer the notes
• Pierre Pérignon was a Benedictine monk – 1688 appointed treasurer at the Abby of Hautvillers; located
near Epernay. Herein he was entrusted the job for
managing the cellars and wine making.
• Although Pierre was not able to prevent the bubbles, but
he did develop the art of blending. He not only blended
different grapes, but the juice from the same grape grown
in different vineyards. Not only did he develop a method to
press the black grapes to yield a white juice, he improved
clarification techniques to produce a brighter wine than
any that had been produced before. To help prevent the
exploding bottle problem, he began to use the stronger
bottles developed by the English and closing them with
Spanish cork instead of the wood and oil-soaked hemp
stoppers then in use.
acessed on 11/04/2010 at 7:11pm )
The Champagne Women
• 18th century: Nicole- Barbe Clicquot-Ponsardin
installed the process of REMUAGE.
Louise Pommery popularized the brut style of
• 20th century: Marie Louise Lanson de Nonancourt
(Champagne Laurent Perrier) and Madame Jacques
Bollinger; continued to exert a profound influence over
• 21st century: Carol Duval-Leroy and Anne-Charlotte
Amory; run major Champagne houses respectively
(Duval-Leroy House, Champagne Piper-Heidsieck).
Other La Champagne Wines
• Bouzy Rouge (from the Grand Cru vineyards, Bouzy) is
a, pinot noir based, well known still wine of the region.
Rosé des Riceys AC
They are the true rosé wine produced from the pinot
noir grape; fermented either in stainless steel tanks for
early drinking or in wood allowing longer ageing.The
rosé has aromas of ripe strawberries, raspberries and
blueberries, hazelnuts and violets. When allowed to
develop over a period of years, these aromas will
develop with exotic, spicy overtones. They have a
distinctive taste known to the French as goût des Riceys.
(Source: http://ladies-with-bottle.blogspot.com/2009/04/rose-des-riceys.html accessed on 15/04/2010 at 11:30pm)
• The regional vin de liqueur is called Ratafia de
Champagne. This perfect companion for aperitifs or
desserts(a crème brûlée, a tiramisu with red fruits) offers
a note of sweetness and an irresistible, complex aromatic
• The pomace from the grape pressing is used to
make Marc de Champagne(brandy), and in this case the
production does not compete with that of
Champagne, since the pomace is a by-product of wine
production. This product is commonly used for making
(source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Champagne_(wine_region) acessed on 11/04/2010 at 7:55pm)
• The Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne (CIVC) is
a semi-public body set up under the aegis of the French
Government to co-ordinate the common interests of
winegrowers and houses in Champagne. Among its key duties
are the promotion and protection of the Champagne appellation
around the world. It also focuses on enhancing technical's
qualities in the vineyard and the wine.
(source: http://www.champagne-civc.co.uk/champagne/champagne.phpaccessed on 16/04/2010 at 2:15pm)
• The Appellation of Controlled Origin (AOC) system
(1935) is key to differentiating Champagne from
sparkling wines. The unique terroir of the Champagne
region and the strict regulations in place ensure only
wines following the exacting standards defined over
centuries are given the name "Champagne.“ These
rules cover all stages of the wine's development, from
vineyard cultivation to final bottling, and are enforced
under France law.
• Coteaux Champenoise Appellation Contrôlée covers the
same grapes and area as of sparkling Champagne
production, but covers only still wines.
• The rarely seen Rosé des Riceys AC covers Pinot Noirs
for Rosé wines from the most southerly Champagne
vineyards of the Aube.
Name of the
wine and A.O.C
Name and address
of the producer
Name of the
Food and Champagne
"A meal without wine is like a day without
The Physiology of Taste (1825)
• Sparkling wines pair well with salty,
fried and vinegary foods and can take
some spice as well.
• Appetizers: Brie, mild cheddar, Colby,
edam and gouda cheese, almonds,
smoked salmon, salami, prosciutto,
stuffed mushrooms, foie gras, salads
potato chips and buttered popcorn.
• Main dish: Caviar, Lobster, scallops,
shrimp, sushi, oysters, fried chicken.
• Dessert: Strawberries, fruit tarts, fruit
or rice pudding, almond or shortbread
_a_wine_club#ixzz0l60Dt398 accessed on 16/04/2010 at 11:30pm)
Regional Foods Best Paired With
• Agneau à la champenoise (stuffed shoulder of lamb with
• Pork chops grilled.
• Game: wild boar, guinea fowl, pheasant.
• Fish: eel, trout
• Pork: ham, salami, andouillete (a spicy regional sausage
• Coq au Champagne (chicken in champagne)
• Carbonnade de boeuf (beef braised in onions and beer)
• Boudin blanc (white pudding)
Suggested Champagne Pairing
Krug Grande Cuvée NV
Tight, fresh, slightly toasty and aromatic with lovely lemony freshness.
Some herby complexity. The palate is wonderfully bright and pure with
tight lemony fruit, as well as subtle toastiness. Really refined and
sophisticated, this is just beautiful.
Heidsieck Brut Héritage NV Champagne
Toasty, yeasty nose. Good depth of flavour on the herb-tinged, toasty
Bollinger Special Cuvée NV, Champagne
Quite deep coloured. Lovely classy, intense nose shows savoury
bready notes and a touch of lifted acidity, with a complex toasty edge.
The palate is very full flavoured with great intensity and almost austere
savouriness. Impressive stuff.
• Champagne Devaux Cuvée Rosé NV
Lovely salmon pink colour. Very fine nose of herbs, toast and soft
strawberry fruit. The palate is quite broad with delicate balance, nice
fruitiness and a creamy, bready texture. There’s even a bit of grip on
• Heidsieck & Co Monopole Rosé Champagne NV
Herby, yeasty edge to the nose. Palate has nice herb-tinged fruit
with some strawberry sweetness. Tangy acidity keeps things fresh.
• Moët et Chandon Vintage 1999 Champagne, France
Full, attractive nose of herb-tinged, slightly sweet fruit with a
richness to it. Hints of caramel and vanilla. The palate is forward and
classy with some vanilla richness and nice balance. Good
concentration and a distinctive herbal edge.
• ICSWI is the first and only Conference dedicated to be
“produced in the independent spirit” Champagnes and
Sparkling Wine (C&SW) from all over the world and the only
seamlessly interwoven public / industry conference entirely
dedicated to the focus on Sparkling wines.
(source: http://www.icswi2010.com/about.php accessed on 11/04/2010 at 11:55pm)
• A remarkable growth can be seen in the consumption
pattern of Champagne. This is because of the increased
consumer disposable income, marketing strategies like
discounted rates, improved quality of the wine and
scientifically studied health benefits.
• Effervescence is an important aspect of Champagne. Thus
the shape of the Champagne glasses are too being focused.
• Beertopia- a unique new product with combination of beer
• Non-Dose, Brut Integral, Ultra Brut, Brut Sauvage and Sans
Foulkes, C. (2001) Larouse Encyclopedia Of Wine (2nd Edition), Hamlyn
Walton, S. (2001) The World Encyclopedia Of Wine (2nd Edition), Lorenz Books
Unknown Author. (1988) A Celebration of CHampagne, Mitchell Beazley
McCarthy,E. Champagne For Dummies, IDG Books Worldwide Inc.
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http://www.wineperspective.com/making_champagne.htm accessed on 12/04/2010 at 11:07am)
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