Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy (LVMH) owns these houses, with some notable facts:
- Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin – produced 12m bottles in 2008; owns 300ha of widely spread GC vineyard and is an important buyer from contract growers; Veuve Clicquot’s cellar master Antoine Muller developed the riddling method in the early 19th century. From 2009 old oak used for 1st fermentation of vintage wines.
- Moet et Chandon – Epernay-based, produced 40m bottles in 2008, so about 10% of total Champagne production, and holds 100m in the cellar; owns about 1200ha – 50% GC, 25% PC; contracts growers for substantial outstanding needs.
- Dom Perignon – the first prestige cuvee, vintage wines only, from a blend of the 3 varieties, and a rose. From 1921-2010 just 36 vintages were produced (so about 40%), with access to all 17 GCs. straight DP vintage, with the green label, has >7 years lees ageing; the DP Oenotheque, with the black label, has 10-15 years lees ageing. Dom Perignon translating to Master Perignon, is credited with introducing the muselet, the use of the coquard basket press to obtain uncoloured juice from black grapes, and the art of blending; it is of course a continued myth that he invented the method of intentionally and systematically introducing the sparkle, this process was first described by Dr Christopher Merret before the Royal Society in London on 17-12-1662.
- Krug – pioneered recent disgorgement (RD), and produces the prestige cuvees of Vielles Vignes Francaises, Clos d’Ambonnay and Clos du Mesnil.
- Mercier – the first champagne house founded, in 1729.
- And of course the foreign ventures of Chandon California, Bodegas Chandon Argentina, Chandon do Brasil, India and China [aide memoire – c,a,b,ich].