Champagne Jean Michel



A 170 year-old passion. Since 1847, a passion for Champagne has been passed down through generations of the Michel Family. Olivier Michel and wife Florence are continuing the family domaine, which dates back for generations. Their domain consists of 12ha in Moussy (overlooking nearby Taittinger's vines, and just 4 km from Epernay). 8 hectares are organic and 4 are farmed sustainably by a team of 10 full-time employees carefully tending to the vines. Each stage of the wine growing process is controlled very closely. Respecting the environment is one of their major concerns: practicing sustainable farming, eliminating insecticides, mechanical green covering, controlling fertilizers and soil conditioners by analyzing the soil of each plot of land.

The Chardonnay vinified here are barrel-aged but only go through malolactic fermentation when occurring naturally - not forced. The majority of their holdings, however, are dominated by Pinot Meunier often overlooked in the holy trinity of Champagne varietals.

As Peter Liem, the noted Champagne-based wine writer and critic, wrote, Meunier is downright hip, especially among the younger generation of growers, and you're much more likely to hear positive comments about Meunier now than ever before. Importer Terry Theise, who knows a thing or two about Champagne, seems to agree. A lot of producers, especially but not exclusively young producers, have discovered the potential of old-vines Meunier. The variety will give delightful results if it's planted in a decent spot and given its share of respect.

The village of Moussy, located just southwest of pernay, beyond Pierry along the two roads D11 (in the Saint-Martin-d Ablois direction) and D951 (in the SÍ©zanne direction), is where Meunier thrives. In similarity to Pierry, Moussy is more or less continuous with the southern part of pernay. The village is located at the foot of the slope where the vineyards are located. The stream Le Cubry, that forms the valley that continues to the west, runs below the village and empties into the Marne in pernay.