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Eric Philippe Champagne | Our Vineyards
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A Concern For Nature

 

Our family philosophy is to respect both the natural equilibrium of its vines as well as the environment in order to preserve the ecosystem for generations to come. To this end, our winemaker, Nicolas Maillart, uses rational viticultural practices throughout his 8.5 hectares of vineyards. He therefore applies Organic farming techniques (tillage, natural cover cropping, Organic fertilizers, etc.) as well as conventional agricultural methods. His environmentally sustainable methods allow him to bring out the maximum quality potential of his vineyards.

Interesting Facts About The Vineyards

 

65% of the vines are mass selected and 35% clonally selected. Clonal selection (selection of a single plant that is then reproduced identically) ensures homogeneous maturing in our most delicate plots of vines. Mass selection (direct selection of a number of mother plants in the vineyard) provides the genetic diversity that is so important for future plots as well as of vines that are mature at the moment. This important source of vines, the result of selections by several generations of vine growers, is our guarantee of quality in the next few decades.

Our vines are about 30 years old, an average that is considerably greater than that in Champagne generally. Given that a vine does not produce its full potential for the first ten years or so, it is easy to understand the advantages of cultivating older vines when it comes to grape maturity and terroir character.

Our rootstocks (used since the phylloxera crisis), planted with 41B as is common with the majority of vineyards in Champagne. However, it is worth noting that we also have a plot of non-grafted vines: Planted with mass-selected Pinot Noir in the sandy soils of Ecueil in 1973, this plot is identical to a pre-phylloxera vineyard. Although phylloxera is still found in Champagne, the Pinot Noir’s aversion to sandy soils allows this plot to survive.

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