A set of rules to follow
An AOC also sets out the entire terms and conditions of production that define the identity of this product :
- rules of planting
- rules of viticulture
- rules of vintage
- rules of pressing
- rules at each step of the development process
- rules of dressing
The rules of the AOC Champagne are very strict
The main rules of the AOC Champagne are :
- An area strictly delimited.
- Permitted grape varieties : chardonnay, pinot noir, meunier, pinot blanc, pinot gris, arbane, petit meslier
- Winter pruning : Royat, Chablis, Guyot, Vallée de la Marne.
- Limiting the yield of grapes per hectare.
- Performance pressing.
- Minimum degree of alcohol power, with the harvest.
- Second fermentation in bottle and maturation on the lees for at least 15 months for non-vintage, 3 years for the vintages.
These rules are optimized continuously
New measures have been taken to improve the quality, including :
- 1978 : the Height, spacing and density of plantations (density of 8 000 feet/ha resulting in a lower load of grapes per vine, guaranteeing optimum quality), driving mode, and system size.
- 1984 : Ban draw the wine in bottles before the 1st January following the harvest.
- 1991 : mandatory Accreditation of the centres of the pressing.
- 1993 : Return to the pressing 160 pounds to 102 litres (instead of 150 pounds before)
source : champagne.fr