Champagne from a Family-Owned Estate

I began looking for a supplier of top level Champagne a decade ago and, after searching through trade shows and tastings, picked Champagne Charles Mignon. I liked the fact that it was a family-owned house with Grand Cru vineyards and wines. Bruno Mignon is the fourth generation of his family making wine in Épernay and I went to see him on one of my spring trips. After seeing the cellars and tasting the wines the decision was clear. Voilà, this is it.

The aging cellar for the top cuvées is underground in Épernay, dug out of the chalk/limestone soil that maintains a constant temperature all year long. The cuverie across the street is one of the most modern with temperature-controlled, stainless steel tanks and has been certified ISO 22000 since 2011. The certification guarantees extreme cleanliness and hygienic conditions. The Mignons own vineyards in the Grand Cru village of Chouilly on the Côtes des Blancs and in the Marne Valley for Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier and have contracts with local growers.

492105.jpgHere are two Charles Mignon Champagnes worth popping this holiday season:

Charles Mignon Brut Grand Réserve Premier Cru – Champagne, France

This cuvée is a blend of 75% Pinot Noir and 25% Chardonnay from all premier cru vineyards on the Montagne de Reims for the Pinot Noir and the Côte des Blancs for the Chardonnay. The wine shows a lot of finesse with tiny bubbles, floral and toast aromas and an elegant finish. $43

492805.jpgCharles Mignon Brut Rosé Cuvée Comte de Marne Grand Cru – Champagne, France

This is one of the few rosés produced from grand cru vineyards. Made from 55% Pinot Noir and 44% Chardonnay with a little still Pinot Noir from the grand cru village of Bouzy for extra color; the wine has light orange color, fresh strawberry aromas and an elegance that sets it apart from lesser rosés. It’s bottled in 18th century antique bottles for a special presentation. $50

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