Seth Box, of Moët Hennessy USA, On Champagne Glasses

As director of education for Moët Hennessy USA, Seth Box is responsible for spreading the word about his company’s spirits, wines and Champagnes — including Dom Pérignon, Krug, Veuve Clicquot, Moët et Chandon and Ruinart — to as many people as possible. Simply put: he regularly takes people out for drinks.

Champagne, he says, shouldn’t be saved for a special occasion. “It’s embarrassing that we, as a country, drink as little Champagne as we do,” Mr. Box said. “Because it’s so much fun, tastes delicious and makes people happy.”

Like most Champagne aficionados, he has definite opinions about the glass in which it should be served. “If you’re someone who appreciates the nuances and finer aspects of Champagnes, the glass is really important,” he said.

He said that while flutes are “great for presentation and showcase bubbles beautifully, from the tasting standpoint, the shape isn’t ideal.” He prefers a shape that is a combination of a white-wine glass and a Champagne glass — one with a bulbous bottom and a narrower top. “You want something with a wineglass on the bottom, to capture the aromas,” he said, which “then tapers up a bit so you focus those aromas on the nose.”

With the holiday entertaining season in high gear, Mr. Box spent a recent morning searching for Champagne-worthy glassware. At Baccarat, on Madison Avenue, he found the Remy stems “boring, but perfect: the bowl will capture the aromas and then focus around the back, and you can hold it without mucking up the glass.” The Vega Flutissimo would probably not be a top pick for sommeliers, but he liked it “because it reminds us that Champagne is also about an aesthetic,” he said. “And the blue crystal adds a touch which is reminiscent of more classic times.”

Nearby, at Lalique, he picked the Facet Champagne flute. “If you’re going to do classic, do this,” he said. “It’s a gorgeous flute.”

Online, he found one of his favorites, the Spiegelau Hybrid. “The deep bowl and larger size allow the Champagne to aerate while still maintaining a sleek look,” he said.

He also liked Govino’s stemless shatterproof design, pointing out that its shape works for many wines and Champagnes, and its price ($12 for four) won’t break the bank.

Ultimately, though, the glass is secondary, he said: “Drink Champagne in anything. If it makes you happy to drink it out of a water cup or a cool little Italian country glass, go for it. Just drink, and be happy.”

New York Times

CHILE THE WORLD’S MOST ROMANTIC WINE PRODUCING REGION

Many viticulturists consider Chile the world’s most romantic wine producing region. Showcasing its natural features such as the Andes in the east, the Pacific Ocean in the west, and the Atacama Desert in the north, Chile has become an increasingly preferred destination for any wine enthusiast.

Chile is a long narrow country, roughly 4,000 km long and 175 km wide. The climate here is reminiscent of California, broadly Mediterranean, with lots of sun and Pacific breezes, with a long growing season.

The Colchagua Valley is one of Chile’s most important wine regions – it is on the verge of becoming one of the most celebrated winegrowing regions. Wine Enthusiast Magazine has named it “Wine Region of the Year” in 2005, and wine critics are also referring to this region as “The Next Napa”.
Known for its fine wine production, Colchagua Valley is the center for red wine production from Bordeaux varieties including Carmenère (nearly extinct Bordeaux variety), and most recently Syrah.

Fun Fact: If you start at the Town of Santa Cruz (Colchagua Valley) you can actually visit 10 wineries in less than 60 minutes.

Where to stay:

In the middle of the vineyards on the Tinguiririca riverbank sits Viña La Playa Winery & Hotel, the perfect wine-country escape. This classic Chilean hacienda-style property is easily accessible by car 2 ½ hrs from Santiago, Viña La Playa Winery & Hotel offers exquisite rooms with vaulted ceilings and fireplaces, along with exemplary service. Nestled among its own 250 hectares of historic vineyards, discover the secrets of La Playa Wines by taking a tour and a tasting. Dining in the main dining room you are offered international and local haute cuisine, along with La Playa wines. Recreational activities include: swimming, tennis, horseback riding, cycling, and canoeing, day trips to the valley’s other world class wineries and nightlife in the nearby city of Santa Cruz.

Discover the charm of this Chilean boutique resort, which offers a unique wine country experience.

http://www.laplayawine.com

www.visit-chile.org

EPERNAY – here you learn to love the tiny bubbles that are synonymous with joy and happiness….

[slideshow] Situated at the heart of the world’s most prestigious vineyards, Epernay, the capital of the Champagne region, attracts over 500,000 visitors every year. With over 30,000 hectares of vineyards, enchanted forests, and bordering the River Marne, this region has the UNESCO World Heritage Site Distinction.

The Town of Epernay, which traverses these famous vineyards, is located between the Marne River and the hills, which is at the junction of the “Tourist Routes of Champagne”. Here, you will find the famous L’Avenue de Champagne “The Avenue de Champagne”. Some of the world’s famous Champagne producers, mansions dating back to the end of the nineteenth century, and large trading houses line The Avenue de Champagne. Beneath this grand Avenue lies 110 kilometers of chalk cellars with over 200 million bottles of Champagne – this makes this Avenue one of the most prestigious streets in the world! Some of the notable Champagne houses located on the Avenue are Moët & Chandon, Mercier, Boizel, Comtesse Lafond, De Castellane Esterlin, Perrier-Jouet, Pol Roger, and De Venoge.

The Avenue was recently renovated and redesigned as an avenue-park creating a pleasant place to stroll and admire the historical buildings with tall ornate gates. With the renovations complete The Avenue de Champagne now has wider sidewalks (almost as wide as the roadway), cycle paths, heritage trees, 
with a special emphasis on lighting (which beautifully enhances the facades and entrances to the Champagne houses). 


Avenue de Champagne is also used for many champagne events, including the upcoming “Habits de Lumière” Christmas lights in December.

A number of the Champagne houses provide one-hour tours and a tasting. Dom Perignon provides a tour in which you will tour historical areas such as the place where Napoleon drank wine. Mercier provides laser-guided tours and elevator rides. Moet and Chandon cellars tours include seeing the million bottles of Champagne stored. The tour of Chandon lasts for about 45 minutes. At Mercier you can see the 160,000 gallon barrel that took about 20 years to complete and stores over 20,0000 bottles of Champagne.

Once you complete a tour and indulge in a tasting, you get to see for yourself that…
Drinking Champagne in Epernay is like listening to Mozart in Salzburg.

How to Get to Epernay

By plane:
international Airports : Paris Orly and Paris Charles de Gaulle

By train:
Epernay is linked with Paris – 10 direct trains a day (1 ¼ hr)

By car:
Epernay is located at the junction of 2 main national roads: 
- RN51, connecting the north countries to the south of France and Europe) 
- RN3, linking the west to the east

Motorways:
1 1/2 hours from Paris and 3 hours from Dijon and Calais
– A4 (Paris-Strasbourg) 
- A26 (Calais Dijon)

Tourist Office Location
Office de Tourisme d’Epernay 

7 avenue de Champagne 

BP 28 
21 201
EPERNAY

PERCHING BAR….More Than A Champagne Bar

Forget the traditional champagne bar – the Perching Bar has just the set the “bar” extremely high on being unique…. so high, in fact, that you are 18 feet up above the trees.

Recently launched, and under the ownership of Olivier Couteau, the Perching Bar is the world’s only Champagne bar in the trees. It is in the midst of Parc Arboxygene, an extreme adventure park in Verzy, France. Situated in the heart of the Champagne region, it is a mere 15 minute car ride from Reims or Epernay.

Access to the Perching Bar is by a wooden walkway. Venturing through the lush forest, up two wooden bridges you come to a suspended 60-meter footbridge – What an amazing view!

La Cabane Perchee, the company that designed the Perching Bar has kept the classic exterior tree-house structure including the stilts. The design concept has a wrap-around wooden terrace complete with puffy sofas, armchairs, and stools for 30 guests. Here you have magnificent views of the zip lines, lush treetops, and the region.

Once inside the bar, you are greeted by a contemporary interior that is chic-simple. With lots of natural wood and white leather seating, it also comes complete with 4 swings. The Perching Bar is also eco-friendly – all the lighting is supplied by solar panels.

Here you can swing while enjoying the views and a perfect glass of champagne! The Champagne List – by the glass or by the bottle, Olivier is the curator. He currently offers a selection of Champagnes from smaller producers to Grandes Maisons:

Champagne Pehu Simonet
Champagne G.H. Mumm
Champagne Bollinger
Louis de Sacy Champagne

The Perching Bar is a glamorous winter playground and the place to be on Thursday through Sunday for a glass of bubbly!

The Perchingbar will be open from 21 March to 31 December each year, from Thursday to Sunday in the high season and just at the weekend out of season.

51380 VERZY
tel. : +33 (0) 6 89 44 73 68
E-mail: @ olivier.couteau arboxygene.eu

www.arboxygene.eu

www.tourisme-champagne-ardenne.com