Champagne G.Richomme
Slider
« WHEN MATTER  FORGES NATURE  »

« When matter 
forges nature  »

On the 7th of May, 1889, a giant barrel containing 1,600 hectolitres of Champagne Mercier was sent to the 1889 Exposition Universelle held in Paris. It was an impressive technical feat at that time as it was towed by about 150 chains and 24 oxen. Looking further into the identity of the craftsman in charge of the creation of the vehicle’s wheels, it was a Mister Leopold Renault, wheelwright and blacksmith at Vertus, who happened to be our maternal great-grandfather.

More than a family affair, this anecdote recalls the history of our family - craftspeople who were passionate about their terroir and who decided to give form to the most beautiful riches, by working on materials, naturally. Not long ago, in the secrecy of the forge, today in the intimacy of our vatting house, wood and metal continue to be the bases of our work. The nature of our champagnes is carefully enhanced by the materials of their containers. A family spirit is reflected in the following words: "When matter forges nature".

barbonne-fayel

The history of our house traces its origin back to 1945 when Georges and Cecile Richomme, our great-grandparents, decided to found the brand G. Richomme. From the moment Marguerite and Gérard Richomme, our parents, met each other, our family business went in a whole new direction... They found an El Dorado in the Sézannais and they fell in love with the municipality of Barbonne-Fayel.

In 1963 Marguerite and Gérard started to plant vineyards. In hindsight, we can say that they were definitely two forerunners. After a tough start, their efforts to meet the requirements of their RM (meaning Récoltants-Manipulants, i.e. independent winegrowers) status paid off. The 1980s were a turning point for the family business as working tools became far more efficient. At the time, Champagne G. Richomme was the only house to have a large welcome and sales area - and actually still is today. 

For more than 40 years Florence and Christophe, their children, have been inspired by the love of the land and human savoir -faire. When the time was ripe, it was quite logical that both of them, soon joined by Laurent Collet, Florence’s husband, took over the company. Since 2008, the three of them have been pursuing one objective: to further develop Champagne G. Richomme by promoting both their vineyards and their products. Resulting in more and more innovative cuvées which reflect these passionate winegrowers’ overflowing imaginations.

BARBONNE-FAYEL

portraits

      Christophe Richomme and Laurent Collet, co-managers of the two companies, work in the vatting house, in the vineyards and deliver to customers. Florence Collet, Laurent’s wife and Christophe’s sister, does the bookkeeping and welcomes customers.

CHRISTOPHE RICHOMME

christophe richomme

FLORENCE COLLET

florence collet

LAURENT COLLET

laurent collet

LE CHARDONNAY

le chardonnay

Chardonnay is the most famous white grape variety and it is grown in many parts of the world. Its ability to adapt to a wide range of climates makes it marvellously expressive, depending on the country in which it is grown.

In France, it is grown in Burgundy, in Languedoc and of course in Champagne. Many people are familiar with Chardonnay grapes from the Côte des Blancs, the chalky soils of which produce typified and elegant wines. People are less familiar with Chardonnay grapes from the Côte de Sézanne and the richness of its wines, full of finesse.

Although the Côte de Sézanne looks like an extension of the Côte des Blancs, it is actually a full-fledged terroir. This can be explained by the soil composition. A series of layers made of chalk and marl lead to champagnes which are aromatic, mineral, fluid and full of energy.

Emblematic of the Côte de Sézanne, Chardonnay is our family’s signature. Ode to its terroir, it is present in six out of seven our cuvées, five of which are made from a single grape variety.

FROM SOIL 
TO BOTTLE

In the heart of our vineyards lies the small village of Barbonne-Fayel. Positioned on the Coteaux du Sézannais AOC Champagne (meaning Champagne Controlled Designation of Origin), our 11 hectares of vineyards unveil the very essence of our identity.

  • ► A plot-by-plot approach
    The average age of our vineyards is 45 years. Because our plots are the most beautiful expressions of our terroir, our house has decided to promote them. This includes both winegrowing and winemaking. Thanks to a plot-by-plot approach, our cuvées offer many opportunities to bring out the expressivity of Chardonnay which can be interpreted in various ways.
  • ► Respecting integrated viticulture
    We are keen to preserve the precious ecosystem of our vineyards and to do so, Champagne G. Richomme makes it a point of honour to follow sustainable practices. Here are some examples of practical suggestions for action that have been implemented so far: cover cropping, zero insecticide, care of the vineyards in accordance with the quality specifications (integrated viticulture in Champagne).
  • ► Juice forged by matter
    Metal: Temperature-controlled stainless steel vatting house is composed of 3512-hectolitre tanks
    Wood: Four 220-litre oak barrels (the Rousseau Cooperage, Beaune).
    Earth: 305-litre terracotta jars (Tuscany).
  • ► An exclusive selection of Têtes de Cuvées
    The very essence of juice to obtain the best products. This is a philosophy we always keep in mind and our champagnes are produced only from têtes de cuvées. With a total capacity of 4,000 hectolitres, our wine press is a high-performing production tool which can meet any demand from great Champagne houses.
  • ► A taste for experimentation
    Driven by innovation, Champagne G. Richomme is keen on considering of new techniques the most recent of which is the use of jars for winemaking. Last in date, winemaking in jar, rarely used in Champagne and still uncommon in France, welcomes a part of the harvest 2016. 
    A real “first” aiming at developing aromas via the natural micro oxygenation of must during fermentation… LA TERRE FORGÉE, a parcelled Old Vines Blanc de Blancs is to discover soon!
FROM SOIL  TO BOTTLE