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RisingStar | Write the future of Champagne

China: 2024.04.23

“L'histoire doit avoir le caractère de celui ou celle qui l'écrit.”

Vitalie Taittinger

President of Champagne Taittinger
Member of La Transmission – Femmes en Champagne
La Transmission– Femmes en Champagne
Ambassador of Champagne Taittinger

Champagne Taittinger, one of the world’s most recognised and respected Champagne Houses. The Taittinger family has managed the Champagne House for nearly a century, although its history can be traced back to 1734.Chardonnay is the main variety in its marque blends, and the Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs cuvée is the purest expression of Taittinger’s house style.

Faithful to the entrepreneurial spirit that has always animated her family, Vitalie Taittinger created a small structure in 2002 which developed numerous projects in the world of wine and gastronomy.

In 2007, admiring the reconquest of the Maison de Champagne Taittinger by her father Pierre-Emmanuel, Vitalie revealed her desire to join the company. She thus began in the world of Champagne with a role of Marketing consultant. Soon, she became the face of the eponymous brand and wore its colours around the world. Two years later, she took over the artistic direction of the family house and integrated it fully.

After having led the Marketing and Communication Department, Vitalie is now the President of Champagne Taittinger.

I don’t want to become stronger by imitating other people — I want to find how to improve always, but in our way

——Vitalie Taittinger

TAITTINGER – The commitment to a name

“Having our family name on a bottle places demands and responsibilities on every minute. The name on the bottle conveys both the skills and knowledge of the past and a commitment to the future”. Pierre Emmanuel Taittinger has embodied this commitment for 40 years, and today he shares it with his son, Clovis and his daughter, Vitalie who both work beside him in the day to day running of the Champagne House. Together, they create a very close-knit and complementary family trio.


1.How many years have you been in the wine & spirits business?

I have been in the wine business over 16 years.

2.What makes you devoted yourself to the wine and spirits sector?

When my father bought back the company he gave us a huge challenge. We started with a significant debt and it was important to manage the financial ambition level to sustain. For me it was very important to continue the way my father was leading the company, being attached to the human adventure that we all share at Taittinger.

Now we made our way and are able to develop the company. Another chapter is about to start and a very exciting one.

3.What are the biggest challenge in the industry you have experienced so far?

My main objective is to continue to enhance the reputation and progress of our company. We are fortunate enough to have an exceptional heritage that includes the remains of Saint-Nicaise Abbey dating back to the 13th century, as well as Gallo-Roman cellars buried 18 meters below ground. It’s a heritage which places our projects in a very long term perspective and a certain wisdom. We also own one of the largest vineyard of Champagne, with those 288 hectares, the question of environment, responsibility and transmission is of course at the heart of our challenge. For me the vision has to be linked to the exceptional quality of the wines we are producing. Today I believe in the quality of our products and their strong singularity as the most important pillar.

After the question is how can we create dream and history on it? How to express ourselves? How feed the second pillar of champagne which more link to the symbol.

4.What are the main distinguishing merits or qualities in women attributing to the career success?

To overcome your fears, to dare not to look like something or someone you’ve seen before, to accept yourself. It’s hard to get there. It requires a lot of demands, honesty, and courage but it is very useful in a career, it helps you to understand who you really are and where is your place.  My life motto has always been: ‘never give up’ and the best advice I ever got, was coming from my father: ‘decide with your heart’. I think that this is very important to keep your empathy, to be able to change your mind and adapt to follow your vision being at the same time realistic.

5.What advice would you give to another female just starting out in her career?

Learn how to dare! This is always disturbing to get out on something you have never seen or experienced. It is important to assume who you are and what you want to do with your life. Do not project yourself onto others’ judgments. Learn from your failure and continue, insist. This is very important.

6.There was a time that Taittinger Champagne house was in the hands of others, but eventually returned to your family. What does this business mean to your family?

I grew up thinking only about what I wanted to do, I studied art, I started working by myself…I just realized that Taittinger could be my life when my father fought to rebuy the company after it has been sold in 2005. It was a huge battle and when he finally managed with the help of the Credit Agricole du Nord Est (a local bank) to take the company back in the family, I have been very impressed by the power of his faith, his courage. I figured out I could not be let out of his fight of following with a family adventure for generations, focused on excellency of producing champagne.

For me family is the main word in our company. It means a lot at each step of the elaboration. It means time, transmission, respect, human pleasure first, decisions made on heart more than on finance, natural environmental engagement…. This is a spirit which is special… being a family we put what we are in the project which makes it very special and unique.

7.Your become the president of the house right before the pandemic, how does the pandemic affect the overall business?

The pandemic underscored the essence of my role as president: responsibility. Our first priority was ensuring the safety of all Taittinger employees amid the uncertainty. Reflecting on the past year with our leadership team, we formulated a clear vision for the future.

Three key pillars emerged: enhancing wine quality and sustainability, elevating customer experiences, and revitalizing our visitor center. We’ve initiated an investment program until 2030 to improve the quality of wine and environmental practices. Simultaneously, we’re revamping our visitor spaces to offer enhanced hospitality and immersive tasting experiences, including a new restaurant and wine pairing menu. Excitingly, we aim to reopen our visitor center in July 2024, just ahead of the Olympic Games.

More and more, for climate change reason, we will concentrate on the product, the quality of the wines and in what express the brand, how we tell our story.

At least, the pandemic gave us the time to think about the human project of the company. This is even more crucial when you must face certain challenges linked to the context of today. We see that tomorrow, having a strong structure, being able to make people feel at the right place, making them develop themselves within the company will be even more crucial, important than before. We also see that more and more the company is a very efficient transformation tool to raise awareness to people on the questions of environment and culture. We have started 2 years ago a CSR (Corporate social responsibility) approach which allows us to improve in that way! This is very interesting to see how people are committed.

8.We have seen the interest and market share for the grower Champagne, as a traditional Champagne brand, what do you think about this trend?

I think that first of all, there is a place for everyone in Champagne. We are playing with a different palette but we are all united behind one word which is Champagne. The question is more about how we can work together to make this appellation stronger. The CIVC(Comite Interprofessionnel Du Vin De Champagne)is doing a fantastic job to unite all the actors of Champagne to make the best with their diversity.

For me this is very important to work on the two pillars of Champagne: the wine and the symbol. We are extremely lucky to all share this fantastic name and history. We have to be generous with the appellation and dedicated to its quality and radiance. We have to continue to cultivate the excellency being deeply what we are.

9.Does global warming affect the production of Champagne? What kind of challenges have been brought by global warming?

Global warming is a huge challenge for Champagne. We have like everybody in this world to face and made decisions to be able to continue to cultivate without damaging nature and adapt our cultural approaches to the climate change. In the sustainability of the appellation, which plays on several generations, the idea of protecting soils and appellation is part of the positioning of Champagne.

In 2005, when my dad took over the company, he initiated an eco-responsible transition of the vineyard, with an estate planted with grass and managed without herbicides, working the soil and promoting biodiversity.

This is true that each year we see new evolutions or strong new tendances. The appellation is working hard to share and improve new ways to cultivate, to study new grapes able to resist to higher temperatures, less water. We all are in movement and one more time committed.

We must protect our land to transmit to the next generation a potential. In in a more general way, we must deal with that now if we want to ensure that human being will be able to live on earth in the future.

10.We know that you are a member of La Transmission. What is the mission of this organization? And what made you decided to join La Transmission?

First, this group has a common goal: to pass on a living, rich and diversified knowledge of Champagne.

Through the technical experience of the workshops we organize and the exchanges resulting from these meetings, we can explain how beautiful Champagne is in its diversity, to speak about the different terroirs, crus, grapes, tastes, approaches. Most of the time, Champagne is seen as one product, so we want make people enter in our culture of diversity. We want them to understand how free we are to create around those magical bubbles beautiful wines and moments which are not necessary linked to big celebrations.

At la Transmission we all share the same values: a love of our Champagne history, of our families and estates, the importance of the vineyards, the desire to promote the Champagne appellation, pride in our profession.

Joining this group was a natural decision. I’m inspired every day by the power of Champagne. This wine is perfect. It’s alive and carries in its energy the flavor of the terroirs from which it comes, that of the grape varieties, the imprint of time, that of the people who shape it. It’s a marvelous, vibrant song that speaks of men, women, light and ascension. It’s a symbol of love and transmission.