Welcome to the heart of the Champagne region!
The village of Mareuil-sur-Ay, at the heart of which lies the Philipponnat Champagne house, nestles so closely along the Marne canal that it looks as if it has always been there.
And this might well be the case: the first traces of civilisation date back to the time of the Gauls! Just before the Romans, who were wine enthusiasts, realised that the slopes of the Champagne hills might be suitable for growing vines. Since then, the people of Mareuil-sur-Ay have added a church, a château, dwellings and Champagne houses.
The vineyards, a UNESCO World Heritage site, have shaped the landscape from the summit of Mont Gruguet – under the gaze of a large statue of the Virgin and child, built in thanks for the return of prisoners and children to the village during the Second World War – down to the banks of the canal, in which the reflection of the hill forms a perfect profile of a bottle of Champagne. This reflection has become famous thanks to a photograph that is well-known amongst Philipponnat Champagne lovers.
On the sunny, south-facing hillside, one of the steepest in the region, a wall has protected the precious Clos des Goisses, one of the oldest and most famous clos (walled vineyards) in Champagne, since 1887.
On the sunny, south-facing hillside, one of the steepest in the region, a wall has protected the precious Clos des Goisses, one of the oldest and most famous clos (walled vineyards) in Champagne, since 1887. The walled plots can be reached by an ancient, narrow flight of steps, which bears witness to the care with which people have maintained, fostered and cherished these vines, at the cost of laborious, mostly manual and sometimes perilous work. It is the power of this landscape, shaped over the centuries with tenacity and passion, that makes Mareuil-sur-Ay such an exceptional place in the heart of the Champagne region.