Grower Champagne: Farmer Fizz
Over the years Champagne has been associated with celebrations. Be it from a job promotion, a newborn’s birth, or the toasting of a marriage this bubbly beverage is always opened with regularity. Celebrities site it in their music and even endorse it for campaigns to make the bottle more marketable. For this reason you end up paying not only for the cost of production of the bottle, but also a little extra to subsidize the cost of marketing.
Less costly bottles made outside of champagne such as Crèmant have thrived as a result and it has become more enticing to even purchase sparklers from outside of France such as Cava from Spain, Asti from Italy and even Kiwi Fizz from New Zealand. Is there still an affordable bottle of Champagne out there anymore? The answer is yes, and it comes in the form of Grower Champagne.
Grower Champagne, often called “farmer fizz” is produced by artisanal farmers in the Champagne region. Their bottles are produced at a much smaller clip, but are very expressive of terroir as each bottle reflects the laborious but meticulous work that the vignerons instill upon their craft. Unlike other Champagne producers who source their grapes from vineyards all over the region, grower Champagne producers source all of the grapes used to produce their bottles from their own land. You also won’t find them in the hands of a model plastered on a big billboard in Times Square, which is all the more reason to love the little guys.
They don’t need the advertising and the bottles do all the talking. All of the classic tastes and nuances that the soil, slopes, and sun have to offer are captured in each bottle and without additional cost. The result, a bottle of excellent bubbly that you can rest assured gives you the biggest bang for your buck. Vilmart & Cie and Cedric Bouchard are among the finest of these prodcuers, but ask your wine retailer or waitress/waiter next time your out. They’ll know exactly which bubblies are Grower selections.