Organic Challenges in Champagne at Moussé Fils

Our third visit in our sustainability focused tour of Champagne led us into the Marne River Valley to visit Champagne Moussé Fils in the village of Cuisles. At Moussé Fils, where we saw for ourselves the challenges involved with organic viticulture in Champagne.

Disclosure: Comité Champagne sponsored our press visits for two days in the northern part of Champagne (Reims, Epernay). Later in the week, we set up independent visits in the Cote des Bar. We provided our own transportation to and from the region.

Champagne Moussé Fils is located just north of Châtillon-sur-Marne. Image courtesy of Comité Champagne at

Champagne Moussé Fils
The Moussé family have a long history as vinegrowers in the region. In the 1920’s Eugène Moussé decided to start producing his own Champagne with his first release in 1926. Tragically, he and his son were deported to a concentration camp in World War II and he did not survive. His wife carried on the business and his son eventually returned to take over. Today, his great grandson, Cédric, carries on the business. Cédric is committed to a sustainable approach in every aspect of their operation from the vineyard all throughout the winery and winemaking process.

Tour the Moussé Fils vineyards to see first hand the challenges of downy mildew in Champagne

Champagne Climate vs. Organic Viticulture
Champagne Moussé Fils are devoted to the Meunier grape which does well in the Marne valley. There is more clay in the soil around the river and the Moussé family concentrate on green clay soils here on south facing slopes. They feel this combination shows the best character of Meunier. The climate in the entire region is challenging with cold and wet conditions possible year-round. In addition, any river valley will bring more moisture to the air, and with it, increased pressure of diseases like downy mildew. The Moussé family stopped synthetic chemical use in 2014, however, some years have required limited treatments of non-organic chemicals in order to save the harvest. 2016 was such a year, and 2021 brought the same challenges. In 2021, the summer rain was so frequent several of their vineyards didn’t produce usable grapes, even with chemical treatments. Still, they remain committed to organic practices every year possible.

(click on any photo to view in full-size slide show)

Sustainability in the Winery
A new winery was built in 2012 with a focus on minimizing environmental impact in operation. Solar panels provide power for the operation, a geothermal energy system provides temperature control. They even have a spring on property to provide water, and all winery wastewater is used for irrigation on the property.

Moussé Fils Champagnes
We finished our tour with a tasting of Moussé Fils Champagnes and their Ratafia. As Meunier specialists, their wines focus on this grape, although they also produce some Chardonnay from plots of theirs where the green clay is buried deep and Chardonnay thrives. Meunier is a mutation of Pinot Noir and it carries nice fruitiness with good acidity. I found the range of Champagnes to possess good fruit, needing little dosage for balance. Their L’Or d’Eugène uses their perpetual reserve (a blend of vintages from 2003-present) to add depth and complexity. My personal favorite was the “Les Vignes de Mon Village”, a 100% Meunier wine from their plots in their home village of Cuisles. The wine had a natural fruitiness and was perfectly balanced without any dosage.

Visiting Champagne Moussé Fils
Should your travels take you to the Champagne region, you can book a visit at Champagne Moussé Fils on their website, here. Visiting both big houses and small producers will give you a much more complete view of the region. You can also follow Champagne Moussé Fils on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

One Response to “Organic Challenges in Champagne at Moussé Fils”
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  1. […] Champagne Moussé FilsChampagne Moussé Fils is a small house in the Marne Valley. They use both their own grapes and grapes they contract. Their vineyards are certified organic. 2021 was a very difficult year for Moussé Fils. Read about our visit here. […]

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