J B Lechere
Jean-Baptiste Lechere is the scion of a major Champagne house, who left in the seventies because he was dissatisfied with the quality and set up his own operation. He buys grapes from selected growers he has known for a number of years and those selected are only from premier and grand cru vineyards. The wines are vinified under his control at Union Champagne. Lechere's wines are the epitome of elegance and the Orient Express has purchased a special cuvee for its service: this contract Lechere has held since 1982 in the teeth of competition from the major Champagne houses. In 1982, Champagne Lechere won the competition amongst 49 major wineries to be the "House Champagne" on the legendary luxury train, Orient Express. This Cuveee Speciale is called "Venice Simplon Orient-Express" and represents their tete de cuvee. It is a Blanc de Blancs and is composed from the following outstanding vineyards: 60% Grand Cru from Oger and le-Mesnil-Sur-Oger 10% Grand Cru from Avize and Cramant 30% 1er Cru from Vertus and Bergeres-les-Vertus. Jean-Baptiste Lechere is the descendant of a well-known Champagne family; in fact a street in Reims bears his family's name. In 1978, after years as Marketing Director for Moet, he created his own Champagne label. In partnership with Union Champagne in Avize, the oldest and finest grower-cooperative in the Cotes des Blancs, he created a premium group of wines which are made exclusively from Grand Cru and Premier Cru vineyards. His goal was to create wines of great quality in limited production, exhibiting finesse and elegance.