Taittinger

HISTORY

In 1734, Jacques Fourneaux, a Champagne wine merchant, entered the champagne adventure at a time when the Benedictine abbeys of Hautvillers, Pierry, Verzy and Saint-Nicaise in Reims owned the finest vineyards and made their first sparkling wines. His son, advisor to the king, frequently traveled abroad and contributed to the company’s growth. Jacques Fourneaux founded the company that would later become Taittinger.

In 1870, the Taittinger family left the Lorraine region after the Treaty of Frankfurt and moved to Paris in order to retain their French citizenship after the Franco-Prussian War and the Treaty of Frankfurt.

In 1915, General de Castelnau set up his headquarters at Château de la Marquetterie during the Battle of Champagne.Pierre Taittinger, a young officer at the time, fell in love with the property and swore to return after the war. 

In 1932, Pierre Taittinger bought Château de la Marquetterie from the wine house Forest-Fourneaux, including its vineyards that had been planted with Chardonnay and Pinot noir since the 18th Century. 

From 1945, François Taittinger, son of Pierre and an innovative man with great foresight, managed the House and defined its signature style. He decided that Chardonnay would be the brand’s dominant grape variety, realizing that in the 20th century champagne consumers would appreciate the qualities of finesse, lightness and elegance.

Taittinger’s signature style has earned the House its worldwide reputation for excellence and allowed it to prosper. 

When François Taittinger died in 1960 following an accident his younger brother Claude Taittinger took over the company until 2005 when Champagne Taittinger was sold by the Taittinger family to the US private investment firm Starwood Capital Group.

The Champagne stakeholder advocated that the new foreign ownership was not compatible with the production of quality champagne that requires time, and trust in the authority to the Chef de Cave, as opposed to short-term profitability. 

As a result in 2006, the Taittinger family led by Pierre-Emmanuel Taittinger, Claude’s nephew, bought the House back for 660 million euros. He is currently the President of the House and he is assisted by his son and daughter Clovis and Vitalie. 

THE HOUSE

Today Taittinger is one of the most famous champagne brands and one of the largest Houses in Champagne and the largest family run.

Yet it impeccably produces high-quality champagnes, consistently, also thanks to its own unusually large vineyard of 288 hectares that accounts for about 1/2 of the House grapes’ needs. 

Composed of Chardonnay (35% compared to only 27% in the Champagne region), Pinot Noir (50%) and Pinot Meunier (15%), the vineyard faithfully reflects the Taittinger style.

Located in the finest regions of the Champagne winegrowing country, from the Côte des Blancs to the Vallée de la Marne and the Montagne de Reims, the vines cover 712 acres distributed among some of the best 34 villages in the Champagne appellation area. They are entirely grown using the latest cutting-edge sustainable farming techniques. Some plots are tended using organic viticultural methods.

Taittinger also deliberately extends the aging time of its champagnes far beyond the legal minimum time, with three to four years for the Brut Réserve and nearly ten for its acclaimed prestige cuvée Comtes de Champagne. This ensures that champagnes are sold when ready to be enjoyed at their best. 

The executor of this vision and guarantor of Taittinger’s style and quality is Loïc Dupont Chef de Cave since 2000.


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