Frothing beer !
White, blonde, amber, red, brown, black… beer has treated us to a whole range of colours since Antiquity to delight our tastebuds ! A palette of shades that you’d think would be the reserve of multinationals, and yet which we are again seeing pop up in craft breweries in Champagne-Ardennes...
Beer is one of the oldest universal drinks there is, and has been consumed all over the world since the 4th millennium BC. It has enjoyed unanimous support for millennia, and especially in Champagne-Ardennes, which had no less than 350 breweries at the start of the 20th Century.
At that time, beer was actually consumed a lot more than it is today, with an estimated average of 900 litres being consumed per inhabitant per year in France, compared to barely 30 litres today ! The Ardennes was crowned the first brewing department in France at the start of the 20th Century, counting some 230 breweries across its territory!
This was a peak that ended with the two world wars, and the boom of industry and technological evolutions, requiring too much investment for these village infrastructures. The Grande Brasserie Ardennaise, the biggest brewery in the region, ceased activity in 1970, and thus ended an ancestral tradition of village breweries. While there were still 60 or so breweries in the Marne in 1905, none remained by 1985. La Comète in Châlons-en-Champagne was the first to close.
A recent renaissance
In the last few years, some enthusiasts have decided to revive the region’s craft breweries. Quality water, malt, hops and a lot of work and patience, that’s all that was needed to see craft breweries reappear on Champagne-Ardennes soil! There are now around 15 establishments in the region.
The land actually has a lot in its favour for reviving this age-old brewing tradition, with the Aube still having a large granary, housing notably an international-class malt house.
Champagne has exceptional terroir and an excellent climate for growing barley, due in large part to the quality of its soil, amount of sunshine and rain.
A deep-rooted passion
Spurred by the exceptional terroir, a group of enthusiasts have taken up the challenge of reviving their department’s craft breweries. An essentially local production, but one that is starting to make a name for itself beyond its borders, as is the case with Sedan’s beer, created in 2007 in homage to the “Prince’s Beer,” produced by the Grande Brasserie Ardennaise up until 1979,and where “Jephie” beer, which was given the Silver Fourquet award at the national draught beer contest in 2010 by the French brewing museum. Its talented brewer, Jérôme Corpel, set up in Méry-sur-Seine in the Aube in 2002.
Discover the Ardwen beer :
Tel. : (0)3 26 68 31 30
Brasserie Artisanale du Der
52220 Montier en Der
Tel. : (0)3 25 55 99 19
Le Moulin Saint Martin
10100 Saint Martin de Bossenay
Tel. : (0)3 25 21 04 75
Brasserie de Vauclair
Tel. : (0)3 25 01 00 40
Tel. : (0)3 25 82 00 09
Brasserie de Sedan
Tel. : (0)6 83 89 92 48