About Forget-Chemin

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Thierry Forget is the fourth generation to head this family estate, situated in the Premier Cru village of Ludes in the Montagne de Reims. Thierry took over control from his father Edmond in 1991; however, this is still very much a family affair with all members actively involved. The day we visited the estate, we met Thierry’s wife Céline who runs the business side of things as well as his dad, Edmond, who still assists with work in the vineyards to this day. 

 

As with many growers, estate-bottling has been a relatively recent occurrence: Thierry’s great-grandfather sold all of his grapes, while his grandfather Paul, who excavated the family’s cellars in the late 1940s, bottled about 30% of his harvest under the label Forget-Bérèche, then sold off the rest. The Forget-Chemin label began in the late 1960s when Thierry’s father Edmond married Denise Chemin. Edmond then increased the proportion of estate-bottled champagne to about 70% of the total harvest. These days, Thierry sells just one hectare of grapes, and retains the rest for his own production. 

Thierry ForgetNot content with the experience and knowledge passed down to him, Thierry obtained his wine making qualification ‘Oenologue Diplômé’ in Reims in 1988. Today the family owns and tends 12.5 hectares of vines; 60 parcels scattered among 10 villages, some of which are just outside the back door of the house. Thierry believes that having so many plots he is afforded two distinct advantages: restricting potential damage caused by hail storms and other vagaries of climate, and enabling optimal picking times as certain varieties will ripen at different times in the varied locations. 

Thierry’s prime focus is on viticulture and although carrying out many organic practices, he is not seeking certification. He reserves the right to be able to use synthetic sprays as a last resort should mildew ever be a serious threat. “Organic farming and biodynamics are very interesting to me, but I am too scientifically-oriented to be bound to them.” Thierry’s passion for the vine is apparent and is one of the main driving forces in his belief of the Special Club and their approach to viticulture and the land. 

Champagne Forget-Chemin's Thierry Forget  Exiting Forget-Chemin's Cellars Forget Chemin- Thierry explaining the intracacies Forget-Chemin Cuvee Heritage Forget Chemin- Checking the vineyard with Thierry

Disgorgement and bottling are all performed by hand, so the dosage levels can be at the request of the purchaser. Disgorgement dates are printed on the side of the cork. 

Thierry is adamant that there cannot be a 'formula' to create a Special Club release, as each vintage is different and the best possible expression will vary accordingly. On my visit, I was fortunate enough to view the composition list for previous releases, and the range of blends is incredible. To illustrate Thierry's masterful blending skills, I have reproduced the list below. 

1996 

50% Pinot Noir, 50% Pinot Meunier 

2004 

50% Chardonnay, 50% Pinot Meunier (50% Verneuil, 50% Taissy) 

1997 

50% Chardonnay, 50% Pinot Meunier 

2005 

50% Chardonnay, 25% Pinot Noir, 25% Pinot Meunier 

1998 

50% Chardonnay, 50% Pinot Noir 

2006 

50% Pinot Meunier, 38% Chardonnay, 12% Pinot Noir 

1999 

60% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Meunier 

2007 

40% Ludes Chardonnay, 30% Taissy Pinot Meunier, 30% Mailly Pinot Noir 

2000 

68% Chardonnay, 8% Pinot Noir, 24% Pinot Meunier 

2008 

50% Mailly/Ludes Pinot Noir, 50% Chardonnay 

2002 

50% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Meunier, 20% Pinot Noir 

2009 

47% Mailly Pinot Noir, 23% Ludes Chardonnay, 30% Taissy Pinot Meunier 

 

   

Champagne Forget-Chemin 

15 Rue Victor Hugo, 51500 Ludes 

Tel: +33 3 26 61 12 17