The odyssey of the Gratiot Family could be summarized in one word: daring. It includes villages, wine-growers, temperaments, and above all a desire to contribute to the success of a common project. These men and women have understood the deep reality of things. They imagined the future and built what was to become - 150 years later - Champagne Gratiot & Cie. We are going to tell you the story of these wine-growers who made their mark in their time and made their terroir known by offering champagnes of very high quality.
Marie-Désiré represents the first generation of Gratiot wine-growers. Born in 1868 in the Department of Aisne, He grew up in Saulchery, a small village of 500 souls. With his wife Eugénie Latizeau and his two sons Raymond and Norbert, he cultivates 1.5 hectares vines supported by stakes (so called « en échalas ») whose production he aspires to sell, in the form of white wine, to support his family. In 1899, the quality of his wines is praised by his peers as he is awarded the prestigious diploma at the Concours Agricole de Paris. Rémy Gratiot’s great-great-grandfather is considered today by his descendants as the Initiator of Champagne Gratiot & Cie. (*One or two-meter stake which is driven into the ground in order to support a vine stock)
Together with his wife Germaine François and his three sons Daniel, Raymond and Gilbert, the man leads his various businesses like an orchestra conductor. As a farmer, livestock producer and a vine grower, Raymond combines the roles and functions to support his family. He is the first to set up a 2 000 kg winepress un pressoir de 2 000 kg on the farm in Saulchery, in order to sell the wine juice to the Wine cooperative of Aÿ (Coopérative Générale des Vignerons d’Aÿ). The local retailers and bars regularly call upon him to purchase this special and unique wine.
With an undisputed affinity for entrepreneurship, he is presented by his descendants as the visionary for the Gratiot Family. Passionate about the winemaking world, he constantly invests to develop his father’s work. In almost 40 years, he increases the size of the small family holding from 3 to 36 hectares.
Throughout his life, Daniel Gratiot will continue to invest in new projects to advance his family. Together with his wife Lucienne Latizeau and their two children, Jean-Claude and Gérard, « Monsieur Cadastre », as he was sometimes nicknamed by some of his friends, will have deeply marked his time as the visionary eye of the Gratiot family.
Born in 1947, Gérard proudly follows in his father’s footsteps and takes over the family holding, together with his brother. In 1968, Gérard meets Claudine Pillière who will become his wife and will give her two children: Sandrine (1974) and Rémy (1976). The family engage in trade in Champagne in 1971 by creating their own brand: "Champagne Gratiot Gérard".
After growing grapes, Gérard discovers himself a soul of a collector gathering thousands of postcards, old coins and stamps. A passion which allows him to publish his first collection book of postcards of the canton of Charly-sur-Marne in 1988.
Four generations have already succeeded when Rémy is born in 1976 in Coulommiers. Like his father before him, He observes and learns about the vine and the wine from the men in the House. The year of his graduation marks a turning point in his life when his father passes away. Rémy then takes over the family heritage with a desire to surpass himself and to offer his technical knowledge for the future of the holding. His desire: offer unique Champagnes, reflecting his regional terroir, whose best representative is Pinot Meunier.
He also can count each day on the great and valuable support of Amélie Perrier, his wife since the spring of 2012. Rémy met this real globetrotter in 2004, during a meal with winemaker friends. They will give birth to their two daughters - Lucie and Marie. Amélie now travels the globe to present the champagnes of the family House to professionals throughout the world. She is formally the Brand’s Ambassador on all five continents.
In order to honour all the previous generations, Rémy decides to change the name "Champagne Gérard Gratiot" into "Champagne Gratiot & Cie". We will no longer talk about a man only, but about a family and a success story.