1490 66th Street • Emeryville, CA 94608 • T 510-653-1040 • F 510-653-1050

Champagne Mouzon-Leroux


FranceChampagneMontagne de Reims


Biodynamic Low/No Sulfur Vinification Natural farming No/Low till, regenerative viticulture

In 2008, Sébastien Mouzon became the 9th generation to take over his family estate located in the Grand Cru village of Verzy, where he can trace his roots in the vineyards back to 1776. Starting with 2 hectares, he introduced natural farming and biodynamic techniques to where now the entire 8 hectare estate is certified by Demeter. Chickens are used to control beneficial cover crops in the vineyards and help combat pests and provide natural fertilizer. Sébastien treats the vines with his own blend of homeopathic tinctures such as dandelion, wicker, nettle, yarrow, and oak to supplement the biodynamic regimen.

Nearly 60% of the Mouzon vineyard is planted with Pinot Noir, while Chardonnay represents just under 35%. The remaining 5% of the vineyard is planted with Arbanne, Petit Meslier, Pinot Blanc, Meunier and Pinot Gris. These “other” varieties are planted throughout his parcels, and also planted in a single plot called Les Fervins. One of the pioneers of Vitiforestry, Sébastien began planting trees in a few vineyards in 2011. Since then, he has expanded to more than 1,300 trees planted in his vineyards as well as 750 aromatic plants including thyme, oregano and mint.

Sébastien has always understood that Verzy produces unique wines, different from the villages of the north (Verzenay Grand Cru) and the south (Villiers-Marmery 1er Cru), and above all very different from the famous Grands Crus of Bouzy and Ambonnay, which are sunnier and facing due south. Early in his career, he studied soil samples from each of his 60 plots. He identified three distinctive hillsides of the village, all facing northeast, but with different strata of soils. The “first” hillside, bordering Villers-Marmery, has more calcareous soil with very little clay, mainly planted with Chardonnay. On the “middle” hillside where the chalk begins to sink deeper and the clay becomes heavier, he has equal parts of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay planted. The “third” hillside, which borders the famous Grand Cru of Verzenay, has soils richer in clay which produce more powerful wines, mainly from Pinot Noir. Overall, he emphasizes, “in Verzy, the dominant part of the wine is the mineral part”, attributing this to the unique silex soils of the village.
From these three distinct terroirs, somewhat rare for one village in Champagne, Mouzon produces blended cuvées from across these different soil types and exposures as well as single parcel bottlings that express a specific site and has opted for unique descriptor names for each.

Blended cuvées:
L’Atavique, named for the term “Atavism”, or the “recurrence of traits in an ancestor in a subsequent generation” (Oxford Dictionary).
L’Ascendant, a solera begun in 2014 is built from lots selected each harvest from l’Atavique.
L’Incandescent is a Pinot Noir based Rosé de Saignée.

Single parcel vintage cuvées:
L’Ineffable (100% Pinot Noir)
L’Angelique (100 Chardonnay)
Les Fervins (all 7 Champagne varietals)
L’Opiniatre (Chardonnay selection without SO2)
Les Fervins Coteaux Champenois

At harvest, each parcel is carefully brought in separately by hand, with an emphasis on physiological ripeness. Natural alcoholic fermentation is done mainly in 228-liter barrels, with a few wines fermented in steel or enamel tanks. For each parcel, he creates a unique pied de cuve from earlier harvested grapes to use for fermentation, a process which he feels helps to accentuate the specific vineyard signature of each cuvée. After the initial fermentation, Sébastian will age the wines for up to two years in barrel before bottling for the second fermentation. There is no fining or filtration, and very minimal-to-zero sulfur is used in the cellar (generally 15mg total/5mg free). En tirage aging is an average of three years, with the vintage wines aging five years en tirage before disgorgement. Not surprisingly, dosage is used very sparingly, if at all, to not obscure the underlying signature of each wine.

All in all, Sébastien follows his own path, crafting expressive, unique wines, which reflect both place and his philosophies and personality. Mostly, he works to express the character of Verzy in his wines, making Champagnes of striking tension and balance without losing their appealing drinkability. These are not hedonistic, fruit forward wines, but soulful, thoughtful, and satisfying wines that bring you back to the glass as they open and develop, displaying true transparency and expression of place.
-Special thanks to Polaner Selections for winemaker notes.