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Grower Champagne

You may have not hear the term bandied around too often, rightly so as there are very few vignerons in Champagne who are making the bubbly stuff themselves. In this guide we dive into the topic and what it means when you're looking a picking up a unicorn Champagne drop. Images courtesy of The Paris Wine Company.
What is Grower Champagne?

It’s as straight forward as it sounds. Grower Champagne is Champagne made by those growers and their families that actually tend to vines themselves.

Often the vignerons are pursuing a dream of Champagne that actually expresses the terroir or distinct characteristics of their site (think soil, climate and vineyard management). This is in contrast to most other Champagne houses (Maisons), which is not necessarily a negative angle, but who source from various plots and vineyards around their area. There is also a third type of Champagne classification in France – Co-operative. This is where many growers opt in to a local co-op facility with a chief winemaker who will produce and bottle their wines for them.

The process of making Champagne is so labour intensive and involved, that this why finding Grower Champagne is such a rare find because project is often driven more out of love and passion than the economics of it.

Images all courtesy of The Paris Wine Company.

What does Grower Champagne taste like?

How much better do vegetables taste from a friend’s farm or maybe some fresh eggs? Not only is the quality often higher and characteristics more interesting, but there is often a change in profile and flavours from year to year reflecting the vintage that was.

A lot of the Champagne vignerons we are working with also choose to maintain a 0g dosage (this is sugar added back into the Champagne after disgorging – releasing pressure and dead yeast) or very very minimal amount of sugar.

They also operate like natural winemakers with all of them on our site being at least applying organic or biodynamic principles in the vineyard, no filtering or fining in the cellar and minimal or 0 sulphur.

The Champagne we have is often delicate, dry and brimming with complexity. Sure to impress you as much as it does to us.



Is Grower Champagne better than Maison Champagne or Co-Operatives?

Most certainly not! Just because someone can go the full distance with growing and making Champagne, doesn’t necessarily mean the outcome will be better. It’s like anything.

We do back our taste in good Champagne though for what you will find online at Notwasted :).

What are different types of Champagne and what do they mean?

Brut Nature

Technically speaking, this should be Champagne made with 0 – 3g/l of dosage (sugar). However, even for non-dosé Champagne, there will always be some residual sugar left over after a ferment as all ferments need sugar!

Brut Nature Champagne are super dry often with cracking acidity. A palate cleanser for sure.


Blanc de Blancs

This is Champagne made only with Chardonnay. Expect citrus and floral aromas, with schisty, minerality and chalkiness and a mouth full of brioche and butter.


Blanc de Noirs

Generally a prominent Pinot Meunier Champagne, Blanc de Noirs are a little bit more fruit forward and on the adventurous/funky side of Champagne. Raspberry and apple aromas, still got dry but fruit oriented.


Rosé Champagne

Rosé Champagne is hard to bed down in a few profiling words. Ranging from deep reds, to oranges and light blush colours they can be dry and savoury, whilst they can also be a bit more jammy red berry fruit natured. It really depends on the area, maker and the vintage.


Vintage Champagne (e.g. specific years) 

If you can splurge on a vintage Champagne from a good maker or area definitely do so! These Champagnes are often more nuttier and creamier than their counterparts with lemon curd, baked apples and hazelnuts.

Vintage Champagne need to be aged for a minimum of three years for this classsification.

Shop Grower Champagne!

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