The term Grand Cru refers to Champagne originating from one of only 17 villages in the Champagne region. The grapes from these 17 villages were classed at 100% under the old and now non-existent 'Echelle des Crus' - a classification used to determine the pricing of grapes.
The 17 Grand Cru villages in include: Ambonnay, Avize, Aÿ, Beaumont-sur-Vesle, Bouzy, Chouilly, Cramant, Louvois, Mailly-Champagne, Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, Oger, Oiry, Puisieulx, Sillery, Tours-sur-Marne, Verzenay and Verzy.
Despite the abolition of the Echelle des Crus, the term 'Grand Cru' (and 'Premier Cru' - referring to the 44 Premier Cru villages) are very much still in use today with these villages continuing to enjoy a high level of prestige. Note that in Champagne, the term Grand Cru indicates a classification by village, and not by vineyard, as in Burgundy.
In order to label a wine as Grand Cru, it must be sourced entirely from vineyards in Grand Cru villages. In addition, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are the only two grapes eligible for Grand Cru status, and while other varieties may be planted in Grand Cru villages, they are not entitled to the Grand Cru designation.
Here at Moore Champage we specialise in offering Grand Cru Champagne and in particular Grand Cru Champagne from the villages of Verzenay, Bouzy and Le Mesnil-Sur-Oger. These champagness are especially delicate, refined and smooth. Our Champagne Store has a range of Champagnes from three Grower families.