Founded by Nicolas Ruinart in the Champage region of France, Ruinart is the oldest extant Champagne house and has exclusively produced champagne since 1729. The characteristic Ruinart bottle used today is strongly reminiscent of the bottled used for champagne back in the 18th century.
Nowadays, Ruinart is owned by the luxury brand corporation LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA.
Drinking champagne from Ruinart
Ruinart only distributes its champages through a few seleccted outlets.
Of the prestige cuvées, Dom Ruinart Blanc de Blancs, made only from Chardonnay grapes, has been available since the 1959 vintage and is the contemporary flagship champagne from Ruinart. Dom Ruinart Rosé – which was introduced just a few years later – resembles the Bland de Blancs, but vinified red Pinot noir is added to make it rosé.
In this category, the champages are called R de Ruinart. Both Brut non-vintage and vintage wines are available.
Ruinart´s ancient cellar
Ruinart owns some of the largest wine cellars in the region and has been in possession of them since 1768. The cellars, which are of Gallo-Roman origin and were produced by ancient chalk miners, are 8 kilometers long and extend to 38 meters below the surface.
In these chalk pit cellars, the air temperature naturally stays at 11 degrees Celcius year round. Non-vintage Ruinart champagne is usually aged in this environment for 3-4 years, while the average for Dom Ruinart is 9-10 years.
In 1931, the chalk pits were classified as a historic monument.
Ruinart – since 1729
In 1728, the French King Louis XV changed the law, allowing for wine to be transported in bottles. Before the law was altered, wine had to be transported in barrells in France. With the new law in force, it suddenly became feasable to send champagne to distant markets.
Nicolas Ruinart realized what the new law ment for champagne´s marketability, and founded the House of Ruinart on 1 September 1729. It´s first delivery of “wine with bubbles” took place in January 1730.
One of Nicolas Ruinart´s uncles was a cloth merchant, and the Maison Ruinart´s production of sparkling initially served to provide sought-after promotional gifts for important cloth buyers. Eventually, the Champagne business began to eclipse the cloth business in importance for the family, and six years after the foundation of House of Ruinart the family stopped selling cloth.
Ruinart – a patron of the arts
Ruinart has a long-lasting tradition of involving artists in their promotional activities. One example is the exquisite Ruinart poster created by the Czech artist Alphonse Mucha at the behest of Andre Ruinart in 1895. Today, Ruinart is closely involved in numerous art events and organisations, including Miami Art Basel, London Design, ARCO, Foire de Bale, and Carre Rive Gauche.
Ruinart donated the trophy for the very first football championship in Switzerland.