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Musée Montmartre, Renoir and Champagne

by Paige Donner

Wine and food pairings. A natural.

Wine and music pairings. Love the original inspiration of this since a few years back.

Wine and Renoir pairings?

This was the theme of a recent champagne tasting in Paris held at the picturesque Musée Montmartre’s Jardins Renoir or Montmartre Museum’s Renoir Gardens which overlook the Clos Montmartre in the shadow of the Sacré-Coeur.

A more idyllic location in Paris on a sunny early Autumn evening could not be imagined.

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All photos copyright 2014 Paige Donner All Rights Reserved

And there was method to this artistic madness… A group of champagne houses from the Aube region, around the village of Essoyes, to be exact, banded together to show off their champagnes and display them with the particular Renoir painting they felt paired the best with their chosen cuvée.

The historical reference is that Renoir lived in Essoyes with his wife and children during the summer months starting in 1895. There is now a foundation established to restore this heritage house where Renoir kept an atelier on the ground floor, overlooking the garden.

Today the village welcomes art enthusiasts and Renoir-lovers in its L’Espace des Renoir et l’Atelier du peintre. They have fondly named this area the Côté des Renoir.  The participating champagnes located in and around the Côté des Renoir are Champagne de Barfontarc, Champagne Jacques de France, Champagne Drappier, Champagne R. Dumont & Fils, Champagne Rémy Massin & Fils, Champagne Thierry Mercuzot, Champagne Richardot, Champagne Cristian Senez, Champagne Charles Collin and Champagne Chassenay d’Arce.

More information, including photos of the paintings each house chose to represent their champagne, can be found at www.renoir-essoyes.com

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Cité du Champagne

by Paige Donner

Every year in September France celebrates their Heritage Days, called the Journées du Patrimoine. This year, I dared to take a preview peek at one of the few new fabulous developments in Champagne.

Champagne Collet, also known as COGEVI, was the first Co-operative established in Champagne. It remains a Top Ten champagne producer, globally.

Champagne Collet, also known as COGEVI, was the first Co-operative established in Champagne. It remains a Top Ten champagne producer, globally.

The oldest co-operative in Champagne, known now as Champagne Collet, located in the little village of Aÿ , has just finished its thorough renovations and construction of elaborate exhibit facilities that depict both the history of champagne in the region and their development as a Top Ten champagne producer.

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Champagne Collet est 1921 Ay Champagne photo by Paige Donner copyright 2014 IMG_4496

This champagne house, Champagne Collet, was first established as a Co-operative in 1921. It is the oldest Co-operative in Champagne.

Champagne France autumn views photo by Paige Donner copyright 2014 IMG_4557

View of Champagne de Castellane Tower in Epernay as you cross the bridge into Epernay coming from Aÿ, Champagne, France. This photo was taken just during the end of harvest 2014, at the golden hour. 

All photos by Paige Donner copyright 2014

The significance of its location in Aÿ, France, which sits just between Reims and Epernay, both dominant champagne producing towns in the region, is that it is the historic setting for the champagne growers’ revolt that took place early in the 20th c. here.

Part of the fabulous exhibit that their facility now houses shows historical photographs and even an old (restored) film that gives accounts of this event. The event served to shape the history of the region and even the wine itself, which has so famously become known around the globe as champagne.

The cellars are also not to be missed. Their vintage cuvées are displayed with elegant accompaniment of local celebrated photographer’s, Michel Jolyot’s, photos.

Since it is not yet officially open to the public, I am posting only a few photos here for now. When it does open its doors for public entry, it is definitely not to be missed. And the little town of Aÿ is one of the most beautiful little villages in Champagne. It is also home to Bollinger and Deutz among several other top-class champagnes.

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Posted by on October 3, 2014 in Chérie Du Vin

 

London Wine Experience

Originally posted on Local Food And Wine:

sponsored post 

Bettane+Desseauve are going Anglophone. Well, probably not quite. BUT the esteemed French wine duo, heralded as two of France’s top wine writers and critics, are holding their third London wine event.

It’s happening October 24 & 25th.

3rd edition of the festival of great wines at the Saatchi Gallery

B+D@Saatchi_VCW2080-46masterclass

The 3rd edition of the London Wine Experience organized by Bettane +Desseauve will take place on 24th and25th October, in the stunning setting ofthe Saatchi Gallery(Chelsea).

This two-day event, createdbywinecritics Michel Bettaneand Thierry Desseauve,well-knownfortheirannual wine guide and their international wine events (Paris Grand Tasting and Wine Experiences London, Hong Kongand Shanghai) will present Bettane+Desseauve’s latest gems to professionals and wine lovers.

What’s on

  • > The wine selection

This year, more than 60 producers from such as Ruinart, Taittinger, Château Branaire-Ducru, Domaine des Perdrix, Domaine Laroche, Masciarelli, Roberto Voerzio – to name but a few – will present their wines…

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Posted by on October 3, 2014 in Chérie Du Vin

 

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Think Harvest Is All Romance? Think Again! It’s Big Business Here In France

Romantic visions of picking grapes in a small French village with friends and family have danced through your head, surely, at least or twice during your oenophile lifetime, right?

Well, think again!

Gendarmerie in the vineyards of France, patrolling harvest

In several regions of France it is BIG BUSINESS, especially in this region here, shown in this short vine video where Republicaine Guards patrol the pickers.

Yep…Big Business doesn’t mess around!

(If You Can’t see the video, CLICK HERE  https://vine.co/v/OWOWxepgPHF )

#Vendanges2014 – Les cavaliers de la Garde républicaine en patrouille dans les vignes de #Champagne

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Posted by on September 27, 2014 in Chérie Du Vin

 

Winners of the 10th Annual Louis Roederer International Wine Writers’ Awards

LRWWA_2013_BookFinalistThe jury is in, and the winners announced last week for the 2014 Louis Roederer International Wine Writers’ Awards.

Held in London’s Piccadilly at the Royal Academy of Arts, the ceremony was attended by an international assortment of members of the wine trade and publishers from around the world as well as writers and journalists. It was noted that the event is becoming ever-increasingly more international.

To commemorate this tenth edition of the Awards ceremony, a special cuvée of Cristal 2006 was served in flutes, called Jamesse champagne flutes, that were designed by the head sommelier at Reims’ Les Crayères restaurant.

:

WINNERS 2014

THE ARTISTRY OF WINE AWARD 2014

ADRIAN LANDER

 

DOMAINES SCHLUMBERGER
EMERGING WINE WRITER OF THE YEAR 2014

EMMA SYMINGTON

Various from thewinemonkeys.com

RAMOS PINTO ONLINE COMMUNICATOR OF THE YEAR 2014

TIM ATKIN

Reports from www.timatkin.com

DOMAINE FAIVELEY INTERNATIONAL
WINE BOOK OF THE YEAR 2014

THE NEW CALIFORNIA WINE

Jon Bonné

CASTIGLION DEL BOSCO
INTERNATIONAL WINE COLUMNIST OF THE YEAR 2014

NINA CAPLAN

Columns from New Statesman

DOMAINES OTT INTERNATIONAL WINE
FEATURE WRITER OF THE YEAR 2014

RICHARD MAYSON

World of Fine Wine

INTERNATIONAL SHORT COPY
COLUMNIST OF THE YEAR 2014

SUSY ATKINS

Articles from Stella Magazine, The Sunday Telegraph

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God Bless The Baroness

by Paige Donner

Last summer, while attending Vinexpo in Bordeaux, I had the great good fortune to be issued a Press invitation to the Gala Dinner held at Mouton Rothschild in Pauillac, hosted by Madame Philippine de Rothschild. 

“The Baroness” Madame Philippine de Rothschild

The gala dinner that The Baroness (as her friends referred to her), Madame Philippine de Rothschild, was putting on was in honor of the first unveiling of their chateau’s exquisite new cellars and museum on the premises of the venerable domain of Mouton Rothschild.

It was extraordinary to see the liveliness, ever present,  in such a courageous woman like The Baroness. She stood up on stage, alongside her son Julien and also the Mayor of Bordeaux, Alain Juppé, and spoke to the assembled guests of  250 people for a solid 20 minutes, unflagging. More than once she drew hearty chuckles from the crowd of some of the world’s most esteemed winemakers and winery owners. She was still every inch a glamorous actress, even at 80.

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Though petite in stature, her courage was immense. 

We all too often associate Mouton Rothschild and Bordeaux wines with tradition and venerability. And while I am not disputing its solid ranking in the history of wine, it is important to remember that the house has bucked tradition continuously since its founding. 

Firstly with the near-sacrilegious innovation of bottling at the chateau a couple centuries ago. Then, under Philippine’s father’s tutelage, dedicating label design to outstanding contemporary artists of the day. And, finally, appointing a woman, his daughter no less, to lead the house into the next millennium.

In a world of French wine all too often overshadowed by a huge majority of men, Madame Phillippine de Rothschild, The Baroness, showed courage, fortitude, leadership and an enviable sixth sense for business acumen (Chile!) and innovation (Mouton Cadet!) during her day. 

That’s a legacy that will not be forgotten.

God Bless The Baroness. 

(More here about her life and legacy  on the NY Times)

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Posted by on September 2, 2014 in French Wine, Paige Donner, red wine

 

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Trendy Wine Bars circa 2014 Infographic

This comes grace à la our friends over at VinePair.

Check out their awesome blog and Wine101 posts if you feel like picking up a trick or two about wine…

This one is awesome!

 

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