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Champagne Jean-Claude MOUZON
by
Kathy Sullivan

Summary: Champagne Jean-Claude MOUZON is a small, petite winery located in the small village of Verzenay. The vineyards are located in Verzenay. The wines are labeled Grand Cru due to the location and quality of the grapes and wines produced here.

Champagne Jean-Claude MouzonAt the end of our visit to the Lighthouse of Verzenay, a wine museum, we met Cédric Lahemade. He is an enthusiastic and passionate winemaker. He took the bus with us to the winery located a short distance away in the small village of Verzenay.

The winery is located on the lower level of a home. Space is tight but the quality of the champagnes is delightful. Just inside the door, the wines are displayed in a small area. A large barrel is used as a table for tastings. We saw a champagne bottle sealed with an unusual string cage rather than the traditional wire cage. Unique photo frames have been created with oak staves. Each frame holds three photos. Our trip included a visit to the below ground level where the wines are aged.

Champagne Jean-Claude MouzonChampagne Jean-Claude MOUZON is a small independent winery in Verzenay, a small village with 1,000 residents. The wines of Jean-Claude MOUZON are classified as Grand Cru due to the geographic location of the vineyards. It is located at the top of a small mountain (227 meters) and the terroir provides a good taste for the Pinot Noir grapes. The MOUZON vineyards consist of 95 percent Pinot Noir with a little Chardonnay.

According to the owners, Frédérique and Cédric, many champagne houses own vineyards and at least 10 of the largest famous champagne houses have vineyards in Verzenay.

Champagne Jean-Claude MOUZON has a 3-hectare vineyard that is divided into plots. Frédérique and Cédric are the 4th generation to take care of the vineyard. The wines are all hand harvested and pressed here in Verzenay.

Champagne Jean-Claude MouzonAt the winery the grapes undergo two pressings. The first press is for the “cuvee” that will be made into champagne. Two thousand kilos of grapes are placed in the press. This results in 1,275 liters of juice. As the pressure increases, this second pressing is called the “taille.”

Grape skins and seeds are used by other industries to make products such as grape seed oil, flour, pharmaceuticals and spirits.

Winemaking

Fermentation takes place by adding yeast. Malolactic fermentation is also used. It was interesting to note that at this point no temperature control is used. After the wine is placed in six vats, Cédric tastes the wine from each vat to decide the blends for the champagnes. If there is a vintage champagne the still wine is placed in barrels for one year. The oak barrels are made from wood harvested in Verzenay.

The production of 1,000 bottles each year is kept in crates at 10 degrees Celsius all year long. The champagne bottles are riddled by hand. Disgorgement takes place by freezing the neck of the bottle.

Champagne Jean-Claude MouzonJean-Claude MouzonJean-Claude MOUZON Champagnes

We tasted two Champagnes. Frédérique poured the wines while Cédric talked to our group. Traditional Brut NV was crisp and offered notes of apple, pear and bread. Brut Grand Cru was a blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Champagne offered citrus notes and a hint of bread.

When planning a visit to Verzenay, an area of Champagne known for Grand Cru, be sure to consider a stop at Champagne Jean-Claude MOUZON.

Champagne Jean-Claude Mouzon

4 rue des Perthois
51360 VERZENAY, France

0033 326 494 811

 

 

 

 


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