Like a Grand Cru White Burgundy with Bubbles
Drawn entirely from the steep Grand Cru Chardonnay hillsides above Cramant, Cuis, and Le Mesnil sur Oger, the “Cuvée Prestige” is a product of centuries of winemaking tradition and refinement practiced by the Vallois and Diebolt families. Wine & Spirits noted, “It’s a delicate, pure Chardonnay, that becomes dramatic in its intensity and breadth.” Still, no one summed it up better than the sommelier at Four Seasons George V, who told us, “When you drink le Champagne de Jacques Diebolt, it’s not as if you are drinking Champagne. It’s more like you’re drinking Meursault Perrières — but with bubbles!”
The Valloises have been cultivating vines in the Côtes des Blancs since the 15th century. The Diebolts arrived in the 19th century. Jacques, the current patriarch, started working the vineyards with his grandfather in the late 1950s. The Diebolts began as farmers, but under Jacques’ vision, they ultimately started making their own wines in the auspiciously spectacular 1978 vintage.
Over 30 years later, much has changed at #84 Rue Neuve in Épernay. Jacques and Nadine Diebolt’s daughter and son have joined them at the domaine. The estate has grown from 15 acres to over 30. The last 2 acres were Grand Cru purchases in Cuis and Mesnil. The land grab would set the Diebolts back a cool $4,000,000. While dining at Four Seasons George V in 2015 — where “Cuvée Prestige” has been the featured Champagne for years — Jacques openly confided: “The family will be in debt for 100 years. But that’s the craziness of Champagne.” In the end, it’s all about what’s best for the bubbles.
Editor-in-Chief, Wine Access