We visited: Henri Giraud

During our second trip to the famous historical village of Aÿ, we decided to visit one of the most interesting champagne producer of the region: Henri Giraud. The Giraud-Hémart family was involved, since 1625, into the wine production but it’s only after Claude Giraud, the 12th generation and current head, took over that the wines have been released under the family name. The philosophy of the house is complex and easy at the same time: they go for natural, minimum processed and sulphur wines. This may sound easy but in reality, to obtain a great wine without much intervention means you will need excellent terroirs and great innovations. And Claude Giraud manages to have both and the wines are truly amazing.

Using Argonne oak casks, instead of steel containers, for the first fermentation, is part of their innovative ideas of how to create a less disruptive metamorphosis for grapes into wine. New experiments are showing that other natural materials recipients, like terracotta or sandstone, are also good and we tasted the Dame-Jane cuvée (champagne rosé vinified in terracotta). It was fantastic!

The entire fascinating philosophy of the house was revealed during the visit, which was made by a very generous host, Julien, who explained us all the processes and the particularities of the house.

Of course, after the cellar visit, we ended up at the table tasting several cuvées, including a very good Coteaux-Champenois wine and a delicious Ratafia, alongside the famous MV17, Dame-Jane and Esprit champagne cuvées.

The entire visit was extremely interesting, partially because we didn’t know too much about the champagne’s house philosophy or the elegance of the premises, and partially due to the beautiful tasting we experience at the end.

As an interesting fact, after the visit, we went for the lunch at a very nice restaurant in Aÿ called Avarum, and there we continued our Henri Giraud tasting with two more cuvées: Hommage au Pinot Noir and Blanc de Craie. Both very nice bottles, a true delight for our palates.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.