The largest official Champagne tasting in the United States kicks off today at the Ivy Room in Chicago. Trade and media attendees will have the opportunity to taste more than 100 unique wines from 36 different Champagne producers.
The event celebrates those wines produced in Champagne, France, which can only be called Champagne. Organized by the Comite Champagne, which represents all the grape growers and houses of Champagne, the tasting gives media, trade and the wine industry a special opportunity to taste and increase their knowledge of a wide variety of wines from the region available on the U.S. market.
“This is the first time we have hosted a Champagne tasting in Chicago and the fourth one we have held in the United States,” said Sam Heitner, director of the Champagne Bureau, USA the representative of the Comite Champagne in the United States. “The selection of more than 30 Champagne brands highlights the authentic qualities that are born from the land, climate and centuries-old methods that can only be found in Champagne, France.”
Jean-Marie Barillere, the Chairman of the Comite Champagne, and Thibaut Le Mailloux, Communications Director of the Comite Champagne are attending the tasting along with leadership from a number of prominent Champagne producers.
“Champagne is a location, 90 miles northeast of Paris, clearly defined and delimited since 1927; this wine region is integral to our unique product. That is why we say that ‘Champagne only comes from Champagne’ and why virtually every country in the world reserves the Champagne name exclusively for these wines,” said Le Mailloux. “With this event, we seek to increase understanding of the Champagne region in the United States, reaffirm the organization’s long-standing commitment to supporting the U.S. market and ensure U.S. trade, journalists and consumers know Champagne only comes from Champagne, France.”
Earlier this year, China and Brazil officially reserved the “Champagne” name for wines only from Champagne, France. Canada will follow on January 1, 2014. These countries join numerous others including Australia, India, Mexico, the EU and South Africa in ensuring that wine labels make it clear: Champagne only comes from Champagne, France.
In 2012, Champagne shipped 308 million bottles worldwide, with more than 17.7 million bottles shipped to the United States, making it Champagne’s second largest export market behind the UK.
SOURCE Champagne Bureau, USA