Champagne Ruppert-Leroy 'Fosse Grely'

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Pinot Noir / Chardonnay

Aube, France

The Ruppert-Leroy farm lies at the southeastern limit of the appellation, outside the small village of Essoyes, just five kilometers from the border with the Côte d’Or. Literally in the middle of nowhere, it is about as far from Reims and its big houses as a Champagne producer can be. Much of the fruit produced here is sold to the local cooperative or very quietly to the Marne’s grandes marques. Their story begins in the 1970s with Gerard Ruppert, a back-to-the-lander armed with a doctorate in philosophy. Ruppert began tending a half-hectare of vines near Essoyes organically, at a time when much of Champagne’s land under vine was heavily treated with chemicals and fruit quality had little importance. Gerard sold his grapes to the local cooperative, but approaching retirement, he offered them to his daughter Benedict Leroy. Leroy jumped at the chance to shepherd the wine from vine to bottle and quit her job in order to devote herself full time to the domaine.

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