Introduced to us by Jérôme Prévost, the domaine Roger Coulon is run by Eric and Isabelle Coulon (8th generation) and their children. The 10.8ha estate based in Vrigny counts over 100 well-selected parcels of older vines (averaging a high 38yo) spread across the Petite Montagne premier cru villages of Vrigny, Coulommes-la-Montagne, Pargny-les-Reims and Villers-Allerand. Most of them are found mid-slope, exposed to the east, with soils varying from pure limestone chalk to deep sand over clay. Having lost his father early, Eric learned the job with his grandfather who never yielded to the sirens of the agrochemical industry, sticking instead to the tried and tested methods of previous generations. They’ve always worked as naturally as possible, leaving grass cover in higher hillside plots to avoid erosion, ploughing most of the land and using manure as an amendment. They use natural yeasts, low yields, low sulphur, juice from the cuvée only (and sell on any subsequent pressings), followed by long bottle ageing. All their champagnes are bottled with a lower pressure of five atmospheres as opposed to the usual six, resulting in an exceptional mousse with a subtle creamy texture. The recent arrival of their son Edgar, who previously worked for renowned grower Philippe Pacalet in Burgundy, has sparked several changes in both vineyard and cellar that could bring an even higher degree of precision and definition in their wines. While Eric’s vineyard work has always been impeccable, they now go a step further by following organic and biodynamic practices. Inspired by his time in Burgundy, Edgar is also keen to focus a little more on fermentation and élevage in oak, using barrels of varying size, shape, and age in order to add texture and complexity to the wines. We’ve also noticed that the dosage has come down over the past few vintages, now rarely going over 3g/l, which particularly suits their wines and highlights the quality of their work in the vineyard.