The Pouillon family has been growing grapes in the region for over a century, but the label began in 1947 when Fabrice’s grandfather, Roger Pouillon, decided that he would make his own wine from the family holdings. Champagne Roger Pouillon was created with the help of his wife, Bernedette, and his uncle, Louis Baulant, who was a well-known winemaker and consultant in the region. As long-term grape contracts began to expire, the Pouillon family was able to grow the estate by re-claiming their familial terroirs. Fabrice’s father, James Pouillon, joined the winery in 1964 and modernized the cellar by introducing enamel-lined tanks and gyropalletes. Fabrice came on in 1998 after finishing degrees in both business and oenology.
The Pouillon family’s holdings are in Aÿ, Mareuil-sur-Aÿ and Avenay Val d’Or in the Grande Vallée, Epernay and Festigny along the Marne River, and Tauxières-Mutry, just to the north in the Montagne de Reims. The majority of the plantings are to pinot noir (3ha), followed by chardonnay (2ha) and pinot meunier (1ha).
Fabrice Pouillon is dedicated to the vitality, energy and health of his vineyards. In 2003, he began the work of conversion to organic viticulture and today he incorporates biodynamic principles into his work including compost management, spraying herbal “teas” and applying 500 and 501 treatments. He employs pheromone confusion to ward off pests, plants cover crops and plows alternating rows to increase vine competition and soil aeration.
Fruit is harvested by hand and transferred to an ancient wooden pneumatic press. The juice falls via gravity into enameled iron fermentation tanks. The wines are aged in a combination of stainless steel and older oak demi-muids and barriques. All of the wines undergo full malolactic fermention. Reserve wines are aged for up to 18 months in 700 liter, old-oak barrels. There is also a stainless-steel “solera” with wines dating back to the late 90’s. The results are electric, terroir driven wines with high-toned aromatics, fresh acidity, and incredible length. These are wines that are light on their feet yet possess depth and intensity that continually unfold with each sip.