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Abelé 1757
1757

Interview with the Director of Maison Abelé 1757: An Immersion into History, Craftsmanship, and Innovation”

29 May 2024

Located in the heart of Reims, Abelé 1757 has embodied the essence of champagne expertise for over two centuries. The 5th oldest champagne house, it continues to combine tradition and innovation under the inspired leadership of its director, Marie Gicquel. Let her guide you as you discover this emblematic site, its century-old cellars and the artisanal passion that drives the Abelé 1757 team every day. Discover how our house perpetuates a heritage while looking to the future with courage and determination.

Can you tell us the story of this iconic place and its importance for Champagne Abelé 1757?

Maison Abelé 1757 moved to 50 rue de Sillery, a symbolic neighborhood of Reims at the foot of the Butte de Saint-Nicaise, in 1942. Reims architect Alphonse Gosset, creator of many historical buildings in the City of Coronations, designed the edifice and cellars at the end of the 19th century: a U-shaped structure made of brick and chalk, with two wings leading to a grand and imposing gate. However, the most important part lies hidden beneath our feet: at 25 meters deep, 2 km of century-old cellars, shaped by human hands, transform each year into a workshop of creation.

What makes the cellars so special in the creation of the House’s wines?

The cellars are a true treasure for Maison Abelé 1757. The chalky subsoil, emblematic of the Butte Saint-Nicaise, provides exceptional aging conditions for our cuvées. Carved 25 meters deep into the chalk, they are plunged into total darkness to preserve the wines’ quality. The temperature, around 12°C, remains constant throughout the year.
The temperature, around 12°C, remains constant throughout the year. The humidity is extremely high, close to 100%. These optimal conditions, combined with long aging, bring about the fine bubbles characteristic of Abelé 1757 wines.

In 2022, the buildings were completely restored. What was the goal of this project?

With such longevity, this renovation seemed obvious and coherent to align with the image we wanted to project and to match our ambitions. Completely renovated from the roof to the labeling room, including the offices, the location is now intended to welcome our professional clients and the specialized press.

How does the artisanal dimension of Maison Abelé 1757 manifest itself?

Due to its size, Champagne Abelé 1757 could be described as a boutique house. We source in limited quantities from a selection of historical partners. Be it the harvest or the blends, all stages are finely crafted.
The year 2024 marks a turning point for our Cellar Master – Étienne Éteneau – and his team. After four years of intense work, the first blends from the 2019 harvest will finally be distributed to the markets.

You mentioned a human-scale House, where craftsmanship is central. How does this translate?

The “Le Sourire de Reims” cuvée is a perfect example. From start to finish, this great Champagne wine is crafted artisanally by a small team. All steps are carried out by hand by our artisans. Their precise and meticulous gestures ensure an exemplary finish on these uniquely shaped bottles.
This expertise allows us to maintain quality throughout the cuvée production process.

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