The history of the turning table in Champagne

by SoDivin
Table de remuage Champagnes

What is the riddling technique?

To restore the clarity and purity of Champagne, producers must eliminate the deposit that formed during the prize de mousse. To overcome this problem, the riddling technique is used. This method aims to bring together the yeasts and additives.

To do this, manual action is required. Riddling consists of turning the Champagne gradually from left to right from its initial position (elongated) to a so-called “point” position where the bottle is upside down. These small successive movements will lead the deposit towards the neck which will be in contact with the capsule. A bottle is stirred manually on average 25 times over a period of one and a half months.

An ancestral know-how

Riddling table

At the time, the riddling technique was done by hand, today only a few Houses still reproduce this ancestral gesture on wooden desks.

Most producers have switched to the mechanized method thanks to processes allowing the stirring of metal crates containing 500 bottles.

The invention of the riddling table in 1816

It was in 1816 that the riddling table was created in the famous Maison Veuve Clicquot. With a visionary and perfectionist spirit, Madame Clicquot invented the riddling table.

At the time, Madame Clicquot wanted to increase the quality of her wines so that they were always clearer and more effervescent. To achieve her ambitions, she made a table pierced with several oblique holes to be able to deposit the bottles there in different degrees of inclination.

Very quickly, this tool will become essential to the development of Champagnes and revolutionize the practice. From then on, the riddling table was used by all the other Champagne houses.

Madame Clicquot
Madame Clicquot

Even if this vinification stage is now mostly automated, in the Maison Veuve Clicquot, some wines are stirred by hand to perpetuate this unique know-how and the memory of Madame Clicquot.

200 years ago, this discovery was a real innovation. A strong heritage preserved with pride by the House of Champagne Veuve Clicquot.

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