Champagne is an 'Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée', which is particularly well regulated. From the terroir to the grape variety (Pinot Noir, Meunier, and Chardonnay) and the winemaking method, making champagne is highly regulated!
The vineyards of Champagne extend over several departments (Aisne, Marne and Aube) and you are warmly invited to take a walk there, from the Montagne de Reims to the Côtes des Blancs, for an exciting wine route!
At Les Grappes, we will introduce you to the champagnes of harvesting winegrowers producing real nuggets that have nothing to envy to the more famous Champagne Houses.
Most champagnes are non vintage, it means that they are made from a blend of grapes from several years. Conversely, a vintage champagne is the expression of a particularly good year, and they age better.
A distinction is made between grand cru and premier cru champagne.
The dosage is a crucial step in the making of champagne, it is the addition of the dosage liqueur which will transform the champagne into an extra-brut, brut, extra dry, dry, semi-dry or sweet champagne, depending on the quantity of this liqueur added.
On Les Grappes, you can also find organic champagnes.
Buying champagne is more complicated than it sounds. Many customers make the mistake of being tempted by the names of certain brands or by an attractive container and label. Instead, know how to decipher the information on the labels to make a successful champagne purchase.
Know the grape varieties when buying champagne
Wines deserving the champagne appellation are made from well-defined grape varieties. These include :
On the market, you will also find the "blanc de blancs", a champagne made from a blend of white Chardonnay grapes. As for the "blanc de noirs", it is produced from a blend of red grape varieties (pinot noir and sometimes pinot meunier). Finally, rosé champagne is made from a blend of white and red wines.
Determining the sugar content when buying champagne
The dosage or sugar content is an important criterion when buying champagne. It depends on the amount of reserve wine and cane sugar added to the drink. So remember to choose your champagne according to the dosage that suits you best.
If you want to enjoy your champagne in all its liveliness, opt for a drink without dosage or with a reduced sugar content.
Knowing the vintages when buying champagne
When you buy champagne, you will have the choice between :
Finding the right sellers for your champagne purchase
To make a successful champagne purchase, get your champagne directly from the producer. You will then be able to discover everything about the production process. It should be noted that some winegrowers do not sell their products on their property. You will therefore need to find out beforehand. In any case, our platform puts you in direct contact with the winegrowers who harvest the grapes, and you can also visit some wine shops. You will discover interesting selections of champagnes and other wines. This is particularly the case for independent sellers who make a point of offering new ranges of drinks.