The Bertrand and Delespierre families have been making wine in the Montagne de Reims for generations, where Chantal Bertrand and Didier Delespierre founded their ten hectare domaine in 1980. Located in Chamery, right between Reims and Epernay, their vines are spread across four Premier Cru villages: Chamery, Ecueil, Villedommange, and Montbré. Their children, brother and sister team Adrien and Clémence, have begun taking over the domaine as they are lowering dosage levels, increasing the importance of organic work in the vines, and focusing in on showcasing the unique micro-terroirs of each of the four villages. Adrien stressed to us during our visit that farming without the use of herbicides and pesticides, meticulous work in the vines and in the cellar, and the balance of oak and tank usage during alcoholic fermentation and élevage have always been important philosophies of his parents; he and his sister will not only respect the philosophies implemented by their parents, but will take the domaine one step further as it is passed on to the next generation.
In the vines, the family works with “respect du terroir,” earning their HVE certification (Haute Valeur Environnementale) for sustainability in 2019. The vines, which average 30 years in age, have never been treated with herbicides or chemicals. Adrien and Clémence will slowly be converting all vineyard work to organic as they work towards smaller yields and higher maturity of the grape before harvesting.
In the cellar, a traditional Champagne press is used and all juice is moved by gravity from the press to the cellar. The wines go through native yeast fermentation naturally in demi-muid, 600L barriques as well as in stainless steel tank. Nothing is rushed during the fermentation process as alcoholic fermentation can take up to three or more weeks. Natural malolactic fermentation may or may not occur, but is never forced. All wines rest a minimum of four years “sur lattes” in their cellar before disgorgement and the amount of dosage used is based on tasting trials before a final decision is made.