The primary grapes used in the production of champagne are black pinot noir and pinot meunier but also white chardonnay.
- Chardonnay (30% of production surface) gives freshness, elegance and finesse
- Pinot noir (38% of production surface) adds body, structure, aroma and complexity of flavors.
- Pinot meunier (32% of production surface) brings fruits and floral aromas.
Most of the champagne produced today is “non-vintage”, meaning that it is a blended product of grapes from multiple vintages. If the conditions of a particular vintage are favourable, some producers will make a vintage wine that must be composed of 100% of the grapes from that vintage year.
A cuvée de prestige is considered to be the top of a producer’s range, often named after notable people with a link to that producer and presented in non-standard bottle shapes. A special champagne for special people and special occasion!
Blanc de noirs:
A french term (literally “white from black”) for a white wine produced entirely from black grapes.
Blanc de blancs:
A french term that means “white from whites”, and is used to designate champagnes made exclusively from chardonnay grapes
Pink champagne are produced either by leaving the clear juice of black grapes to macerate on its skins for a brief time (known as the saignée method) or, more commonly, by adding a small amount of still pinot noir red wine to the sparkling wine cuvée.