Cumières is situated on the right bank of the Marne in the heart of Champagne, 4km from Epernay. The combination of the hillsides, which lie in an amphitheater with southern exposure, the chalk subsoil, and a warm micro-climate resulted in Cumières being classed Premier Cru de Champagne. The Laval family has lived in Cumières since 1694. Vincent’s ancestors always worked the soil without weed-killer, chemical fertilizer, or synthetic pesticides. In 1971,Vincent’s father, Georges, started practicing organic viticulture and made wines in a traditional, natural, and artisanal way. In 1996, inheriting the precious family knowledge, Vincent took over the domaine. Today, 5 people work full-time at the domaine. With the help of Dylan, Estéban, Raphaël and Mathilde, Vincent works 2.5 hectares of vines by hand, makes the wine and produces approximately 20,000 bottles of champagne per year.
The domaine is broken down into 8 parcels. No fertilizer is used in the vines, all work is organic, and the soil is worked gently by hand. Harvest occurs over ten days and the last parcel to be harvested is always lieu-dit les Hautes Chèvres which sits at the top of the hill in Cumières. Vines are extremely densely planted at 9,500 plants per hectar and are surrounded by plum and cherry trees. At maturity, the grapes are harvested by hand while in a “good mood” and then pressed at the domaine. Sulfur is only used at the press.
After settling, alcoholic fermentation occurs naturally through the activity of indigenous yeasts, without chaptalization, in oak barrels in the cellar. The quality of the grapes, the long vinification period and using only small barrels allows a natural clarification of the cuvées. The domaine operates without fining and without filtration. The wine is built slowly, naturally and thus retains all its organoleptic properties, all its purity. Laval always waits for malolactic to complete.
From the harvest to the bottling, the barrels are topped up every week. The different grape varieties and parcels are vinified separately. Once ready, the wine is bottled and rests on its lees for 18 to 48 months depending on the cuvée. Riddling is carried out manually for around thirty days before disgorgement.
Garennes : This cuvée is born of a blend of our Pinot Meuniers harvested in 2018 in the vineyards of Chambrecy with reserve wines from 2013 to 2018. Fermentation and ageing in barrel confer matter and structure to the cuvée Garennes. Extra Brut : a light dosage of 1g /ltr is used to achieve perfect balance.
4,400 bottles produced.
Cumières Premier Cru is a perfect reflection of the terroir of Cumières. Individual attention to each vine, perfect maturity, natural aging for 8 months in oak barrels bring out the original flavors and the aromas of their terroir and create the harmonious balance which is indispensable to the creation of our Brut Nature with no added sugar, nothing artificial. Cumières Premier Cru Brut Nature is
7,987 bottles of harvest 2018 (45% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir, 15% Meunier) produced.
490 magnums of vintage 2015, (1/3 of each varietal) produced.
50 jéroboams of vintage 2015, (1/3 of each varietal) produced.
Les Chênes : The excellent terroir of Chênes is situated in the eastern part of the village of Cumières, between the road to Aÿ and the road to Hautvillers, below the famous abbey. Their parcel has optimal conditions – situated mid-slope with southern exposition, a chalk subsoil on a thin layer of clay-silt, in organic viticulture for a long time. Made with a selection of ripe chardonnay, fermented and aged 8 months in oak barrels, the bottles of Chênes 2016 spent 3 years on their lees. The cuvée Les Chênes is a champion Blanc de Blancs, Brut Nature, characterised by its finesse, its complex structure, its persistant minerality, salty…
1,765 bottles of vintage 2016 produced.
Les Hautes Chèvres : The lieu-dit of Hautes Chèvres is located above the village of Cumières, upper mid slope, on clay-limestone soil. Known for the quality of its Pinot Noir, this is where the domaine has the majority of their parcels of Pinot. Vintage 2015 came from their old vines of Meunier planted in 1967 and 1965. The small yields, linked to the great maturity and the mineral tension of the terroir of Hautes Chèvres results in a lovely aromatic palate.
1,500 bottles of Hautes-Chèvres produced.
Les Longues Violes : “Les Longues Violes” evokes the “Long Route” of passion traced by generations of vignerons who were wise, respectful, attentive, sensitive. The mythical parcel of Longues Violes has belonged to the Laval family for several generations. The soil has never seen any synthetic pesticides, weed-killer, chemical fertiliser – my ancestors never used any. Since 2003, no fertiliser has been added. The richness of the flora and fauna are witness to the natural harmony of this parcel. It is unique in Champagne. The massal selections of Meunier were planted in 1947, those of Pinot Noir in 1964 and 1984. The first vintage, 2012, produced 1520 bottles of the cuvée Les Longues Violes. Riddled by hand and disgorged in limited quantity the last 240 bottles spent 72 months sur lattes before disgorgement. Les Longues Violes 2012…