Champagne Savart: L’ouverture d’auteur

by Chiara Giovoni 12/16/16
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Champagne Savart: L’ouverture d’autore

Fréderic Savart is a winemaker who is a bit grunge and a bit poet and who in Ecueil, a few kilometers south of Reims down the winding road of Monteagne de Reims, produces wine he refers to as ‘vin d’auteur’. In his view this is “a wine in which the winemaker is deeply involved, a wine where technique and know-how serve intentions, emotions and feelings”.

The truth is that in his wines Frédéric seeks to preserve the utmost purity possible from the grapes his four hectares of vineyards produce. The rows of the older vines are so close together it is not easy to walk between them and every operation is done by hand. Grass is cultivated between the rows to maintain the soil’s biological diversity and the immune systems of the plants themselves are utilized to combat disease and this contributes to restoring a rich and diversified ecosystem. In the newer vineyards Frédéric is able to use a small tractor and since preserving the terroir has become a kind of mission for him, he replants only using shoots from the oldest vines that were planted by his grandfather.


The soil in Ecueil has good clay which produces Pinot Noir with a taut and precise structure and Savart’s approach is to respect the identity of the grape and the land. To this end, in the winery he uses not only stainless steel but also new-wood barrels – in order to limit the employment of sulfur necessary to preserve the microbiotic residue of previous vintages – made from oak trees found in a forest not far from his vineyards. He does not practice batonnage and tries to avoid malolactic fermentation in order to maintain that acidic tension which distinguishes all his cuvée.

Savart’s Champagnes are undoubtedly expressions of the terroir but they also reflect the candor and philosophical convictions of the person who guides the wine from the vine to the bottle with a sensitivity that unites depth and harmony, finesse and essence. 

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