The very first Champagne House, founded in 1729 by Nicolas Ruinart, was established on Saint-Nicaise Hill in Reims in 1768. This followed the purchase of land and crayères, ancient chalk quarries, at a site known as Le Moulin de la House. The House is also renowned for its exceptional cellars, which were awarded listed status in 1931.
From the second half of the 18th century, Ruinart built premises on the hills of Reims and on Saint-Nicaise Hill, but these were destroyed during World War I. They were fully restored by the architect Thiérot in the aftermath of the First World War, keeping to the original layout and architecture, based on a U-shaped cavalry barracks design. The site, which has been extended by the addition of more contemporary buildings, houses the production premises and visitor facilities, which are now located in a former cellar.
The Ruinart Champagne House owns the most impressive of all the crayères in terms of sheer size. Some of these ancient chalk quarries originally reached heights of almost 50 metres; however, they were partially filled in to place the whole complex of 24 galleries and shafts on a single level for use as cellars. Nowadays the highest measures 38 metres, equivalent to the height of the nave in Reims Cathedral.
The Ruinart cellar network, which extends over 8 kilometres, brings together medieval crayères and galleries dug out during the time of the Ruinart family, beginning in 1768 and then from 1830-1860.
Champagne Ruinart – 4 rue des Crayères – 51100 Reims
Tel.: +33 3 26 77 51 51