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Champagne Dom Caudron
by
Terry Sullivan

Champagne Co-operative Dom CaudronSummary: The Champagne Dom Caudron champagne house has much to offer visitors. It has easy access from Paris just a few kilometers off the A4. We spent a relaxing few hours here that included a lunch, tour and tasting. Many travelers like this champagne house and make a point to stop in Passy-Grigny on the way to or from Paris.

The Co-operative

The co-operative has 80 members. Grapes, 80 percent Pinot Meunier, are grown on 131 hectares (324 acres) in Passy-Grigny a village in the Marne Valley. When the co-operative began in 1929 there were 23 members growing grapes on 12 hectares (30 acres). Today, the co-operative consists of 75 vignerons growing grapes on 130 hectares (321 acres). Eighty percent of the vines are Pinot Meunier while both Pinot Noir and Chardonnay comprise ten percent of the plantings. The co-operative produces 800,000 bottles of champagne. The co-operative hopes to increase production in the future while keeping the quality high.

Champagne Co-operative Dom CaudronThe advantages of belonging to the co-operative include sharing knowledge and skills as well as taking advantage of the production equipment. The main objective of the co-operative is the champagne making for the members. About half of the winegrowers are selling the bottles with their own labels. The other half sell their bottles to a negociant.

We interviewed Victor Caudron and visited the champagne co-operative in April 2015. Victor wrote about the future of Dom Caudron, “2015 is a quite new year marked with dynamism and changes. We develop our Champagne estate to offer new experiences to our customers with special tasting for example. Developing the tourism activity is very important; we will continue to create new activities and tasting.”

Champagne Co-operative Dom CaudronVictor mentioned wine tourism and what a visitor can experience. “We received around 3,500 visitors in 2014. This number is increasing every year. We offer many opportunities to live a real experience with the Champagne. There is a unique visit trail showing and explaining all the champagne making and the work on the vines. On this visit trail you will discover a museum with many old presses and tools and a cinema in which we screen a 20 minute movie about the winemaking and vine growing. Then you will see the winery from a 6 metes footbridge and discover all the equipment we use for Champagne production. The visit ends with the tasting of Champagne Dom Caudron.”

After entering the tasting building we saw many pieces of equipment including several old-time wooden wine presses (pictured above and left), bottle fillers and corkers. It was quite a contrast to see these beautiful wood presses then visit the winery where modernization rules. In the winery many steps of producing champagne are mechanized. The winery also houses stainless steel tanks and oak barrels. Soft colored light reflects from the surfaces of these tanks and barrels. Outside the winery building, a painted mural outlines the twelve months of the year and the work that is done in the vineyard and winery.

Champagne Co-operative Dom CaudronChampagnes

Back in the tasting building we had several champagnes paired with foods. The foods included small portions set up buffet style. Our first wine was a Fasci Nante Brut Rosé. The red with a pink hue champagne was 80% Pinot Meunier and 10% each for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. A still red wine was added for the color. The wine was disgorged in March 2015 and had a dosage of 9 grams per liter. Columns of beads rose to the surface forming a small mousse.The aroma and taste offered raspberries and a hint of strawberries. There was citrus on the crisp finish. Epicurean was made of 100% Pinot Meunier. The yellow color champagne was disgorged in June 2001 and had a dosage of nine grams of sugar per liter. A single column of beads formed a mousse on the surface. The champagne was creamy and had a light berry fruit aroma and taste.

Champagne Co-operative Dom CaudronThe Cornalyne was also produced with 100% Pinot Meunier; however, some of the Pinot Meunier was crafted in oak. The wine was disgorged in June 2014 and had a dosage of nine grams per liter. The yellow color champagne had multiple columns of beads forming a mousse. It exhibited traces of vanilla and red berry fruits. The champagne paired well with cheeses. The 2007 Sublimité 50/50 Brut was a blend of 50% Pinot Meunier and 50% Chardonnay. The wine spent time in a barrel. The dark yellow champagne was disgorged in November 2014 and had a dosage of nine grams per liter. Columns of beads rose to the surface forming a mousse. It was creamy and had red berry fruit, apple and vanilla aromas and tastes with a subtle hint of caramel.

Champagne Co-operative Dom CaudronOur final offering was Prédiction. This 100% Pinot Meunier had a yellow color and multiple columns of small beads forming the mousse. The wine was disgorged in November 2014 and had a dosage of nine grams per liter. The champagne exhibited red berry fruit and citrus on the aroma and taste. There was mineral on the aftertaste. It is notable that Dom Caudron places information on that back label that some people are now demanding of the industry. Consumers can find the date of disgorgement and dosage as well as other useful information.

Wine Tourism

Champagne Dom Caudron is providing many wine tourism experiences and continues to create new experiences. They have a small theater set up in the winery, we did not have an opportunity to view a film because of time constraints. One fun activity in the winery is to don a pair of three dimensional glasses and look at the photos on the wall leading to the theater. The photos have the three dimensional effect. Call the champagne co-operative to set up an appointment.

Champagne Co-operative Dom Caudron
10 Rue Jean York, 51700 Passy-Grigny
+33 3 26 52 45 17

 

Article written April 2015


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