Arbane is a white French wine grape variety that has been historically grown in the Aube region of Champagne, but has now all but disappeared from the vineyards with less than 1 hectare (2.5 acres) left in France in 2006. Despite its rarity, it is still permitted grape variety to be blended with Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier and other varieties in the Champagne cuvée.
Recent years have seen a renewed interest in the older, almost extinct grape varieties of the Champagne region, including Arbane. The Champagne house Moutard-Diligent in Buxeuil is the only producer of a "Vieilles Vignes" Champagne made only from Arbane, while a few others, including Champagne Aubry and Drappier, produce blends which include both Arbane and other now rare Champagne varieties such as Petit Meslier and Pinot Blanc. Moutard-Diligent also produce a "Cuvée Six Cépages" which uses six of the seven authorized grapes varieties : Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, Petit Meslier, Pinot Blanc and Arbane; the additional approved grape variety being Fromenteau. (Pinot Gris)
Alternative Names: Arbanne, Albane