Champagne

The Champagne production zone (AOC vineyard area) is defined and delimited by the law of 22nd of July 1927. It lies
some 150 kilometres to the east of Paris, extending into the departments of the Marne (66% of plantings), Aube (23%), Aisne (10%), Haute-Marne and Seine-et-Marne. The zone stands at roughly 34,000 hectares of vineyards, spread across 320 villages (‘crus’) of which 17 traditionally rank as ‘Grands Crus’ and 42 as ‘Premiers Crus’.

The Champagne region lies at the northernmost limit of vine cultivation (latitudes 49°5 and 48° North for Reims and Bar-sur-Seine respectively). It is distinguished by a dual climate that is subject to both continental and oceanic influences.
Continental influences bring often-devastating winter frosts but also provide high levels of sunshine in the summer.
Oceanic influences keep temperatures on the low side but also ensure steady rainfall, with no major fluctuations in temperature from year to year. 


Producers from Champagne:

Champagne Gratiot-Pillière

Champagne Louis Brison


Appellation characteristics

Max. Summer Temperature

90°F

Altitude
90 - 300 m

Main Soil Types

75% limestone (chalk, marl and limestone proper). This type of terrain provides good drainage and also explains why certain Champagne wines have a distinctly mineral taste. 

Average Rainfall                                                                                                                                                                                         
700 mm

Latitude 48° 96′ North

Longitude  03° 28′  East

Types of Grape

Pinot noir accounts for 38% of Champagne’s surface area, followed by the Meunier (32%) and the Chardonnay (30%).  It is the Pinot noir that adds backbone and body to the blend, The Meunier is more robust and less prone to frost damage because it buds later; The
Meunier adds roundness to the blend,  The Chardonnay is king in the Côte des Blancs, yielding delicately fragrant wines with characteristic notes of flowers, citrus and sometimes minerals. The Chardonnay is the ideal blend companion for wines that are built to age.