The Champagne production zone (AOC vineyard area) is defined and delimited by a law passed in 1927, encompassing roughly 34,000 hectares of vineyards.

Geographical location

It lies some 150 kilometres to the east of Paris, spreading across 320 villages (‘crus’) in five departments:

  • the Marne (66% of plantings),
  • Aube (23%),
  • Aisne (10%)
  • Haute-Marne and Seine-et-Marne.
  • Four main growing areas of the Champagne terroir:
  • The Montagne de Reims.
  • The Côte des Blancs et the Côte de Sézanne.
  • The vallée de la Marne.
  • The Côte des Bar.

The champagne Terroir

A dual climate

The Champagne terroir has two major distinguishing features: northerly latitude and a dual climate that is subject to oceanic and continental influences alike.

 

A limestone subsoil

Another key feature of the Champagne terroir is its predominantly limestone subsoil, which keeps the vines naturally watered all year round.

 

The importance of slopes

The undulating to moderately steep terrain in Champagne creates ideal vineyard sites, combining good drainage with optimum exposure to the sun.

 

A multifaceted personality

Three major features – climate, subsoil and relief – combine to create a mosaic of micro-terroirs. There are as many geographical permutations in Champagne as there are plots of vines.

 

Vineyard plot distribution in figures

  • Total sub-regions: 20
  • Total crus: 320
  • Total ‘lieux-dits’ (‘named places’): tens of thousands
  • Total plots: 2,750,000