Fruit of his labour
As winemaker of Champagne Charles de Cazanove, Christophe Rapeneau can count on the resources of his family group of champagne houses to deliver excellent bubbly.
Not many winemakers would be candid enough to admit that they devote most of their attention to a certain wine in their portfolio; it’s almost like singling out your favourite child in public. But Christopher Rapeneau’scase is of a different situation and scope: as chief winemaker and cellar master of Champagne G.H. Martel & Co., he has to manage seven champagne houses under his wing.
The Epernay-based Champagne G.H. Martel & Co. is the spearhead of his family group, which oversees six other estates: Champagne Vielle France in Reims, Champagne Chateau de Bligny in Cote des Bars, Champagne Paul Louis Martin in Montagne de Reims, Champagne Charles Oban in Vallée de La Marne, Champagne Mansard in Epernay, and Champagne Charles de Cazanove in Reims. The 53-year-old Rapeneau readily says he spends the most time in Champagne Charles de Cazanove, as “it’s the house with the most exposure in our group”.
“Champagne Charles de Cazanove is the second largest champagne brand in France,” says Rapeneau. “It makes three million bottles a year, while 10 years ago, it was producing only 500, 00 bottles a year.” Champagne G.H. Martel & Co., on the other hand, produces two million bottles.
Excerpt from the June issue of epicure.