Ernest Rapeneau Champagne, produced in Epernay, the capitol of the Champagne region, was founded in 1901 by the head of the family, Ernest Louis Rapeneau. The family-run Champagne House is one of the last of its’ kind, operating on such a large scale, handing down the family expertise more than five generations. The House sources from 420 family grown and managed acres of estate vineyards. Grapes are carefully selected in order to craft the perfect blend. Each champagne emulates heritage of inimitable style created to delight and make those great occasions very special.
Ernest Rapeneau founded his champagne and wine business in 1901 in the village of Hautvillers, the cradle of champagne. However, it was not until 1927, when the viticultural boundaries of Champagne were fixed, that Ernest began to specialise in the champagne trade. This turned out to be an excellent decision as viticulture in Champagne was in the midst of a structuring phase. As a result of these essential regulations, he was able to select his wines more carefully and improve the quality of his business to a remarkable extent. Ernest Rapeneau was, first and foremost, a lover of champagne wines.
In 1936, the supremacy of champagne wines was finally acknowledged with the birth of the “Champagne Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée” (AOC). This was a high point for his business, which already enjoyed an excellent reputation. He decided to broaden his range and extend his distribution network, encouraged by the widespread increase in champagne wine sales.
After fifty years’ hard work, he finally retired from business in 1965, leaving two of his sons, François and Bernard, who had joined the House in 1944, to run his company. The personality of Champagne E. Rapeneau is based mainly on that of its founder and his descendants: everyone has been able to find his own place within this family business. For four (4) generations, everyone’s aim has been to preserve, perpetuate, adapt and improve a priceless traditional heritage.
Méthode Champenoise, is the traditional method by which Rapeneau Champagne is produced. The wine goes through a vigorous process starting with; primary fermentation following the capping and crowning of the bottles. Next the wine goes through secondary fermentation, aged at a 45 degree angle and riddled. Concluding the process the bottle necks are frozen, the corks removed, a dosage of sugar is added, bottles recorked and finished. This process has been used for centuries and ensures the highest quality wines with more layers of complexity and fruit than bubbles made through a different process.