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Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des Crayèrers
Kathy and Terry Sullivan

Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des CrayerersSummary: Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des Crayèrers is a large winery cooperative, working with numerous vineyard owners in the Champagne region of France. The visitor center is bright and large with a small, comfortable seating area. Be sure to look for the large cork with a sign for Guinness World Records.

Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des Crayèrers has two large buildings. One is new, as of 2013, and dedicated to receiving and producing the grapes and pressing them. There is a possibility that the entire production area could be moved into the new building in the future. The older building houses the visitor center and winery. The winery is used for fermentation, blending the champagnes, the secondary fermentation, aging and bottling. The name Beaumont des Crayèrers means “Pretty Hills of Chalk,” a reference to the setting of the vineyards of the cooperative's members.

Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des CrayerersHistory

The start of Champagne Beaumont des Crayèrers was in 1955 with 60 grape growers. Today 250 grape growers participate in the cooperative. The cooperative has a contract with each grower. The growers must adhere to the cooperative’s requirements. In return the growers share the profit and some of the champagne. Most contracts are for nine to twelve years.

The vineyards are 60 percent Pinot Muenier, 25 percent Chardonnay and 15 percent Pinot Noir. It was noted that the vineyards are not sustainably farmed but are “environmentally friendly.”

Today, Beaumont des Crayèrers produces around 600,000 bottles of champagne. They export 70 percent of the production mainly to United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden and Japan. Other countries, with smaller export numbers, include the United States.

Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des CrayerersProduction

The cooperative uses only premium grapes. Occasionally 25 to 30 percent of the grapes received are not used by the cooperative but are sold on the market. After harvest of the grapes, it is possible for the cooperative to reject the grapes. However, it was noted that this seldom happens. At the pressing facility, three large presses can each press 12 tons of grapes. A meter can analyze the concentration of sugar and acid in the juice. The analyzed juice is then directed to a particular collection vat.

Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des CrayerersIn the winery, the original building, we had the opportunity to view the final bottling process for the champagne. The bottling line was automated. Champagne bottles, that had been aging during the secondary fermentation, were turned upside down, and the neck of the bottles were placed in a solution to freeze. The bottles proceeded along the line and were automatically disgorged. Further along the line the dosage was added to the bottles. Then the bottles were corked and wired.

We observed other parts of the winery. An old press is still used for some of the grapes. Stainless steel tanks ferment the wines that will become the cuvée. What was noticeably absent were riddling racks. Instead, gyroplates riddle the bottles.

Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des CrayerersCooperative Champagne Beaumont des CrayerersWines

The tasting room area offers several photo opportunities. One is a giant-size champagne cork that is mentioned in Guinness World Records. The next photo opportunity is next to a large, almost two meters high, bottle of champagne.

We tasted three Champagnes in the tasting room. Grande Reserve was a blend of 60 percent Pinot Meunier, 25 percent Chardonnay and 15 percent Pinot Noir. This straw colored wine offered notes of citrus and yellow stone fruit. Grand Prestige was 40 percent Chardonnay, 40 percent Pinot Noir and 20 percent Pinot Meunier. The wine offered notes of citrus and apple and was creamy. Grand Rosé was a blend of 40 percent Pinot Noir, 20 percent Chardonnay and 10 percent Pinot Meunier. The wine was a salmon color with a red hue. The wine had notes of bread and some citrus.

Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des Crayerers

When visiting the Champagne wine area, visit Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des Crayèrers, and learn how a cooperative works in this wine region.

Cooperative Champagne Beaumont des Crayerers

64 rue bde la Liberte
51530 MAROUEIL, France

0033 326 552 940

GPS: N49º 3’ 9.6” E 30º 55’ 36.4”

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