CHAMPAGNE MARIE COPINET | Fresh Inspiration in the Sézannais

Marie-Laure and Alexandre, the owners of Champagne Marie Copinet, located in Montgenost in the Côte de Sézanne, both come from families of viticulturers. Alexandre’s grandparents inherited their first vines in 1956 and decided to create their own brand in Cuchery, in the Vallée de la Marne, whereas Marie-Laure’s parents acquired their first vineyard plots in the 1960s and established their domain in Montgenost in 1975.

Today, the couple manage 9 ha of vines under their own domain, Champagne Marie Copinet, a mosaic of three different terroirs from all corners of the appellation of Champagne. The vineyard sites in the Sézannais area in the Aube, such as Montgenost, Villenauxe-la-Grande, and Verpillières-sur-Ource, come from Marie-Laure’s side of the family, whereas the plots in the Vallée de la Marne, like Cuchery, Montigny-sur-Vesle, and Châtillon-sur Marne, are from Alexandre’s family.

Their vineyards are planted with the three typical grape varieties of Champagne: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Meunier, and have an average age of about 30 years.

With a great sensibility for sustainable viticulture, Marie-Laure and Alexandre have completely stopped the use of insecticides and herbicides, and furthermore reduced all other treatments by half. In addition, Alexandre, who takes care of the vineyards and cellar, has started to work the soils mechanically following ancient methods in order to revive the soils and increase their activity naturally. Due to all these efforts they have recently received the Terra Vitis certification and are currently thinking about the next steps that could lead to further organic certification.

They are directing all their energies into quality measures and promoting the terroir of the Sézannais. As members of Secraie, a group of vignerons from the Côte de Sézanne who have teamed up to promote their still rather unknown Chardonnay terroirs, as well as Les Mains du Terroir, another group of wineries promoting their heritage and savoir-faire, the Copinets are working hard to achieve their goals.

The biggest challenge during harvest is the widely spread plots, which make logistics during harvest more complicated and traveling hours long. Their team splits up and brings the day’s harvest – which is kept in a dark, thermo-regulated place throughout the day – back to Montgenost every evening. Equipped with two big presses in their newly built winery, which may seem excessive for the total vineyard surface of 9 ha, they ensure they can always press the traveling grapes immediately on arrival without having to wait for another press to finish.

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Read the full story in CUVÉE Magazine No. 3 | Spéciale Champagne.

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Written by

Stefanie is the founder and chief editor of CUVÉE Magazine. Epicurean at heart and wine professional in life, she writes about all things wine and food that pamper her palate. Living in Champagne and holding the Champagne Master Level Certificate as well as WSET certificates, she can't stop discovering new bottles and the stories behind the labels.

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