Founded in 1900 by Emile and Léone Laforge, the winery began as a supplier for Moët Chandon. However, after World War One, Emile and other local winegrowers collaborated to found a local union for the production of Champagne in the Marne Valley and Laforge-Testa was born. In 1980, the house, now in its third generation, acquired more land which was planted to Chardonnay, a rarity for the Marne Valley. Today, Larforge-Testa is run by the fourth generation of the family – José Testa manages the vineyard and the vinification and his wife Armelle Testa is responsible for the marketing and sales.
Their vineyard holdings currently consist of 22 separate plots of which 40% are planted to Chardonnay, 50% to Pinot Meunier, and 10% to Pinot Noir. All of their wine is estate-grown and bottling takes place in the same producer’s union that was founded by Emile in 1921. The Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are the main varietals used for their Champagne – most of the Pinot Meunier is sold to other producers for blending.
While their viticultural methods are not strictly organic, natural methods are followed whenever possible. No fertilizer is used in the vineyards because the soils are rich in nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus and weed-control is accomplished using mulch. The only treatments the vines see are necessary ones for mildew, oidium and botrytis.
Producer: Armelle & José Testa