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Labruyere buys grower Champagne

Edouard Labruyere, who owns property in Pomerol, Meursault and Beaujolais, has added a grower Champagne to his portfolio.

Domaine Christian Busin consists of 6.5ha of Grand Cru vineyards in Vérzenay, planted to 65% Pinot Noir and 35% Chardonnay. The purchase was completed last month.

Labruyère (pictured) owns Domaine Jacques Prieur in Mersault, Chateau Rouget in Pomerol and Domaine Labruyère in Moulin à Vent, Beaujolais.

Nadine Gublin, who currently makes the wines in Burgundy and consults in Pomerol, will take over the winemaking, with plans to immediately bring down yields, lower the dosage, and concentrate on developing a terroir-led style.

Labruyère intends to keep the existing name for at least the next few years, until the desired quality has been achieved.

‘I have been looking for a Champagne property to buy since 2008, and have visited over 35, but the big houses are tough to compete against when buying,’ Labruyère told Decanter.com.

‘It is a fascinating challenge to be making wine in Burgundy, Bordeaux and Champagne, and I am thrilled to have finally found a way to do so.’

Labruyére says that there is a lot of work to do on the estate, which at present is producing 60,000 bottles per year.

‘But the vines are in a good condition, and the terroir is excellent, in one of the most beautiful parts of the Montagne de Reims.’

The Labruyère family also owns land in California, in the AVAs of Howell Mountain and Carneros, currently rented out to Beringer. The Prieur family retains a 20% stake in Domaine Jacques Prieur.

Written by Jane Anson in Bordeaux

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