Champagne - a bit of theory

Champagnes comes only from Champagne!

Terroirs de Champagne

  • The Côte des blancs and the Côte de Sézanne (Epernay, Avize, Vertus, ...)
  • < em> La Montagne de Reims (South of Reims, Berru, Mailly-Champagne, Ludes, Ville-Dommange, ...)
  • La Vallée de la Marne (right bank and left bank) (Vincelles, Troissy-Bouquigny, Aÿ, ...)
  • La côte des Bar (Les Riceys,, Landreville, .. .)


Champagnes "Millésimés"

Unlike other regions of France, champagnes can be blended on the basis of wines from several Champagne terroirs, different grape varieties, but above all harvests of different years.

The vintage champagnes, are champagnes assembled on the basis of wines and juices from the harvest of a single year. This base year, reference is indicated on the bottle.

Some champagnes, although made up of wines from the harvest of a single year, do not bear any indication of vintage and are not considered as "vintage".

Classification of vines

If the bottle of champagne is labeled Grand Cru or premier cru, it means that all the grapes used for this vintage come from vines with this designation.

Champagnes "Grand Cru"

17 villages have historically been known as "Grand Cru"

The vineyards of the following villages may, in whole or in part, bear the name "Grand Cru":

Ambonnay 100%; Avize 100%; Aÿ 100%; Beaumont sur Vesle 100%; Bouzy 100%; Chouilly; Cramant 100%; Le Mesnil sur Oger; Louvois, Marne 100%; Mailly-Champagne 100%; Oger, Marne; Oiry; Puisieulx 100%; Sillery, Marne 100%; Tours sur Marne 100%; Verzenay 100%; Verzy

Champagne "Premier Cru"

42 villages benefit historically known as 'Premier Cru' by examples, Ludes, Virtues, Ville-Dommange. >


During disgorgement, a small part of the contents of the bottle is ejected with yeasts. To compensate for this "loss" and define the desired dosage, the champagne producers add what is called "expedition liqueur". Each producer has their recipe.

Some houses produce champagne to which they do not add no sugar. We use the same wine as that of the bottle to top up.

Below, the gram content of sugar per liter:

  • Champagne "Without dosage" or "Brut Zéro": 0g / l
  • Champagne "Brut Nature":; 3g / l
  • Champagnes "Extra Brut":; 6g / l
  • Champagnes "Brut":; 12g / l
  • Champagne "Extra Dry": 12 to 17 g / l
  • Champagnes "Sec": 17 to 32 g / l
  • Champagnes "Demi-Sec": 32 to 50 g / l
  • Champagne "Doux":; 50g / l

Champagne Blanc de Blancs

Champagne made from only white grapes. In general, the grape variety will be Chardonnay. But some winegrowers use the following grape varieties also authorized in Champagne, Arbane, Petit Meslier, or Pinot Blanc.

Single-grape champagnes are generally identified.

Champagne Blanc de Noirs

Champagne made from black grapes such as Pinot Noir or Pinot Meunier. Some blanc de noirs are the fruit of a combination of grape varieties, others are mono-varietals. In general this will be mentioned.

Champagne Rosé

Rosé champagne was invented by the house of Ruinart in 1764. L the rosy color of this wine can have different origins.

Rosé of assembly

We will assemble at one time or another during the elaboration process, white juices and red juices, whether at the very beginning, at the pressing or at the very end of the process, adding champagne red wine to a champagne, at the time of disgorgement.

Bleeding rosé

The bleeding rosé is obtained by macerating black or gray skin grapes (pinot-noir, pinot-meunier and pinot-gris) so that the juice tints naturally, like traditional rosé wines. This champagne is recognizable by its more vinous aromas and its intense pink robe. It is also generally a single grape variety created from Pinot Noir. We should call it "Rosé de Noir (s)".

Other Champagne appellations:

  • Ratafia Champenois
  • Côteau Champenois
  • Bouzy
  • Rosé des Riceys