Chartogne-Taillet remains the only RM producer in the village and under Alexandre Chartogne’s guidance, the wines of Chartogne-Taillet are some of the most sought-after Champagnes being produced. Alexandre worked with Anslem Selosse, who he describes as “my wine father”, returning home in 2006. The first wine that he produced was the 2006 vintage of Les Barres, a very special parcel of ungrafted Meunier, planted in 1952. The soil in this parcel is sand for almost 3 meters before the roots reach the chalk bedrock, allowing the vines “to live in two environments”.
Les Couarres is located in the center of the vineyards of Merfy, with some of the richest, most humid soil in the village. This south facing, gentle slope has more water in reserve than the other plots, a benefit in warm, dry years but which also makes it more susceptible to Spring frost. Of the single parcel wines that Alexandre produces, Les Couarres also requires the most work in the cellar during maturation. He notes that is more susceptible to oxidation and oxygen during élevage must avoided as much as possible during the aging process. Wines from Les Couarres are marked by a sapid, textured roundness, a broad character, followed by a lift of freshness and a backbone of acidity, framing the wine. This release is tighter and more reductive from the clay influence on the wine.