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Domaine Evremond is the realisation of a dream between Champagne Taittinger and UK partners Hatch Mansfield. Launched in December 2015 at Westminster Abbey, it marked English Sparkling Wine history. Champagne Taittinger, with its British friends, had bought 69 hectares of farmland at Selling Court Farm in Kent with the intention of planting a vineyard to produce premium English Sparkling Wine. The first Champagne House to do this.
The hard work began, preparing the land for our first plantings. On the 2nd May 2017, memorable as a rainy, cold unseasonal May day, ‘Digging Evremond’ celebrated our official planting. 20 hectares of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier were planted over one week, with plans to plant up to 40 hectares over the next two to three years.
Autumn 2018 should see our first grapes harvested; however, it will be 2019 or 2020 before we see fruit that can be used to make our first bottles. It is then a long and patient wait whilst the wines age over three years and we will finally taste our first wines and toast the remarkable story in 2023.
The philosophy behind Domaine Evremond is very much rooted in ‘friends and family’, reflecting the independent, family-focused values of both companies. It is embodied by Pierre Emmanuel Taittinger president and grandson of the founding family;
“Our adventure is driven by a mix of friendship, a deep gratitude and love for our number one market for Champagne Taittinger and a passion for Anglo-Franco history, particularly that of Saint Evremond. First and foremost, it was inspired when I told my great friend Patrick McGrath of Hatch Mansfield, who distributes Taittinger in the UK, how impressed I was with some of the English sparkling wines that I had tasted and that we should find some land and create a marvellous sparkling wine together.
For us, it was only natural that we should concentrate our land search in Kent as it is “The Garden of England”, where we believe the best fruit is grown. And for me personally, it is a very special place as my father Jean twinned Reims with Canterbury when he was major of Reims. Kent is also one of the warmest and driest counties of England. We were delighted to find some beautiful land, on chalk, very similar to the terroir in Champagne, near the charming village of Chilham. Here, we planted vines and our journey truly started. There will be many more milestones to celebrate before we taste our first bottles.”
We take our name from Charles de Saint-Evremond (1614-1703), a Frenchman and the first true ambassador for Champagne, who fuelled its popularity in England at the court of Charles II. A poet, epicurean and literary critic, he was buried in Poet’s Corner in Westminster Abbey. A passionate historian, Pierre-Emmanuel named this new company in his memory.
As it unfolds, we will share our journey, and in the future invite new friends, followers and family to come and see the story for themselves.