In 1834, Adolphe Fresne settled in Villedommange as a vineyard worker. His son Onésime followed him in his profession, then married Emérentine Laherte, the only daughter who would later inherit her parents’ vineyards. This was the beginning of the Fresne family’s history as winegrowers. At that time, the totality of their harvest is transformed into white wine and sold to the Great Champagne Houses.
Prosper succeeded his father Onésime and started to sell his wine in bottles during the crisis of the 1930s. In 1946, the siblings joined forces to create the Fresne Ducret champagne brand, which developed over the decades, from father to son, for more than a century and a half. In 2006, Pierre, Adolphe’s great-great-grandson, took over the business and started building a pressing and vatting center, then implementing organic conversion, while respecting the know-how of his ancestors and the tradition of quality of Fresne Ducret champagnes.
Pierre goes even further in his approach to winemaking than required by the specifications of the Champagne appellation: when the harvest is sufficiently abundant, the end-of-press juices are systematically discarded and his vintages are aged on the lees for much longer than the required fifteen months. He also finds his freedom of expression elsewhere, in the blends, which he does not hesitate to modify according to the year, or in the use of different containers: stainless steel or enamelled steel vats for their neutrality, oak or acacia barrels for their interaction with the wine.
The vineyard of Champagne Fresne Ducret is the reflection of several centuries of history. The composition of its subsoils is a real color chart, a palette where each stratum is the representation of a past era. We are on deep soils for the parcels Les Loges and Les Glaisières, with heavy soils with strong clay components, the roots of the vines will stay cool during the whole season and have access to a water reserve even in dry periods; the maturity will be slower and the wines will stay fresher. The terroirs of the parcels Les Huchis and Les Monts Teigneux are on lighter soils with less clay; these soils will favor the warming up in spring and the ripening at the end of the season and will accentuate the fruity side of the wines.
Champagne Fresne Ducret is one of the few wineries that have vines in a single area, mainly Villedommange, with a parcel in Jouy-lès-Reims which is right next to the border of Villedommange, which makes this champagne have a typicity, an expression of its terroir that makes it unique.