Day Four

Today we visited two new houses: Cuperly in Prunay and Philliponnat in Mareuil-sur-Ay. We also returned to Delavenne Pere and Fils – one of the grand cru

The village of Prunay is southeast of Reims.  Champagne Cuperly maintains a modern “cellar” facility there which includes processing from pressing to labeling and a tasting center.  Cuperly’s vineyards are in the village of Verzy described in “Day Three.”

Bouzy, a Grand Cru village in the Grande Montagne de Reims, is renowned for its ripe full-bodied pinot noir, historically as a still wine.  The vineyards are mostly south facing and in belemnite chalk.

The Premier Cru village of Mareuil-sur-Ay is located in the Vallée de la Marne on the Marne canal of the Marne river, east of Epernay and southeast of its neighbor Ay.  It is planted 84% Pinot Noir, 9% Chardonnay, and 7% Pinot Meunier, mostly on south facing slopes. It is known for producing powerful Pinot Noirs.  There are a number of single vineyards of note, but the most significant is the Philipponnat “Clos des Goisses.”

Champagne Cuperly, Prunay

The House of Cuperly was founded in 1845, initially located in Mourmelon-le-Petit as a wines & spirits trading company. In the early 1900s, Robert Cuperly began to acquire and to develop a vineyards in Verzy in order to create his own champagne. In 1997, Anne-Sophie Cuperly joined the house with her husband Sébastien Lecca. Currently, they operate a facility in Prunay.  We toured and tasted with Yohann.

Cuvées Tasted:

  • Grand Réserve, Grand Cru
  • Grand Réserve Rosé, Grand Cru
  • Grand Réserve Carte Verte, Grand Cru
  • Prestige Brut, Blanc de Blancs, Grand Cru
  • Prestige Brut Millésime 2011, Grand Cru
  • Prestige Brut Blanc de Noirs, Grand Cru

Delavenne Père & Fils, Bouzy

This is a house that we know well and have enjoyed visiting and tasting their Grand Cru cuvées. Founded in 1920 by Marcel Delavenne, this house is now under the care of fourth generation Jean-Christophe and his wife Maelle. The juice from each grape variety is vinified separately in stainless steel tanks with no malolactic fermentation allowed.  The vineyards are worked with integrated agriculture, maintaining the soil, allowing biodiversity, with no pesticides and a progression towards organic farming.

We currently import 5 cuvées including the newly added “Brut Tradition” and the tete-de-cuvée “Amour de Louise.”  We toured and tasted with Maelle and Jean-Christophe Delavenne and Susan the export and communication manager.

Champagne Philipponnat, Mareuil-sur-Ay

The famed house of Philipponnat was founded by growers in the 16th century. Today there are 20 hectares among the villages of Ay, Avenay and Mareuil-sur-Ay. The house has been headed by Charles Philipponnat since 1999. The most famous vineyard/cuvee is “Clos de Goisses.”  The vineyard in the premier cru village of Mareuil-sur-Ay has plantings of 2/3rd  Pinot Noir and 1/3rd Chardonnay.  We toured the Clos des Goisses vineyard and tasted with Eloise.

Cuvées Tasted:

  • Royale Réserve Brut
  • Royale Réserve Rose Brut
  • Grand Blanc Extra Brut 2008
  • Blanc de Noirs Extra Brut 2012
  • 1522 Extra Brut 2009, Grand Cru
  • 1522 Rosé Extra Brut 200, Premier Cru

Visit What’s Open to learn more about these cuvées.

Continue the tour with Day Five!