The “OenoPass” Launched last week in the Champagne Region

Launched last week by the Champagne region is the wine tourist friendly “OenoPass”.

The idea is simple and ingenious –  Visitors pre-pay 50Euros and have access to ten plus participating partner venues include Champagne houses and Champagne cultural and historical points of interest.

OenoPass is best adapted to tourists who have a car. Participating properties include: Champagne de Castellane in Épernay, Cristallerie Royale de Champagne et Musée du cristal in Bayel, and the Drappier Champagne Estate in Urville, Champagne G.H. Mumm located in Reims, Domaine Pommery and their sister property, Demoiselle, also both located in Reims, as well as Le Phare which is an old lighthouse that an eccentric businessman, Joseph Goulet, built in 1909 in Verzenay which has been restored and resurrected as a modern museum paying tribute to the history and techniques of champagne with state-of-the-art audiovisual installations. All participating venues are along the “Route du Champagne”. Both French and English are spoken.

Tourists have a choice of the 5 coupon ticket [25Euros] or the 10 coupon ticket [50Euros] which are both good until the end of the year, with the special introductory price of 25Euros. Most cellar visits and tastings in Champagne are priced from about 15Euros/per person.

Along the Champagne Route make some stops for regional delicacies such as the ham from Reims “jambon de Reims” which is triple boiled – the legendary Café du Palais in Reims city center serves a generous slice of it accompanied by Langres cheese. Also further down south French foodies never pass up the opportunity to try Andouillette AAAAA from Troyes. Don’t forget the emblematic “biscuits rose” or pink cookies dusted with powdered sugar that so perfectly accompany a glass of rosé or blanc de blanc Champagne!

Liz Palmer



Champagne Drappier and Royal Wine Corp. Announce a Joint Venture to Launch First Ever Kosher Champagne

Royal Wine Corp., the largest importer and distributor of kosher wines in North America, and Champagne Drappier, the highly-regarded Champagne house have recently formed a joint venture to import and distribute the first-ever kosher cuvees from the famed Champagne region.

Royal Wine Corp.’s travelling winemaker Pierre Miodownick participated in the vinification of the two kosher cuvee’s, a project several years in the making. The release is set to take place for the upcoming Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah).

The two Champagnes to be released are:

Carte-D’Or Brut – blended with the traditional Champagne grapes: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier, it possesses aromas of white peaches and cherries while providing aromatics typical of a rosé Champagne though the appearance of a blanc; and

Carte Blanche – a blend made exclusively from the first pressing, fresh and fruit forward, considered to be a great “party wine” by the region.

Established in Urville, Cote des Bars, Aube since 1908, the Drappier family today grow and harvest a 75 hectare (99-acre) estate. Charles de Gaulle adorned his cellars with Drappier’s most famous cuvees. Planted by the Gallo Romans circa 1 AD, the vineyard was one of the first to be improved by the Cistercians of the Clairvaux Abbey.

Drappier is the largest champagne house in the Aube region and produces approximately 1.6 million bottles a year. Said Michel Drappier: “We are thrilled to be able to expose our hand-crafted Champagnes to a new kosher audience.”

Nathan Herzog, Executive Vice President of Royal Wine Corp. added: “As the industry leader in kosher wine, we take pride in producing and distributing the finest kosher wines. We are excited to include the Champagne house of Drappier’s stature to our select portfolio.”

Champagne Drappier
Address: Rue des Vignes, 10200 Urville
Tel: 03 25 27 40 15

Royal Wine Corp.
Address: 63 Lefante Lane PO Box 17, Bayonne, NJ 07002
Tel: 201.535.9006
Fax: 718.388.8444

Liz Palmer – Wine and Travel Writer
Member of the Circle of Wine Writers (UK)
Distinguished Member of The Wine Century Club