Cel­e­brat­ing with Cham­pagne

Toast the holi­days with France’s favourite cham­pagnes

Where Paris - - Contents - By Pa­tri­cia Val­i­centi

As the hol­i­day season set­tles in talk turns to one of the most fes­tive of li­ba­tions, cham­pagne, a de­cid­edly French af­fair, for cham­pagne is made from grapes grown on a group of se­lect hill­sides and slopes, the vast ma­jor­ity of which are con­cen­trated in the French depart­ment of the Marne, in and around the cities of Reims and Eper­nay. For it was here in east­ern France that three cen­turies of labour by men and women turned a cold, hu­mid land­scape of rel­a­tively poor soil of al­most pure chalk, re­spon­si­ble for cham­pagne’s dis­tinc­tive taste, into a world- fa­mous bev­er­age syn­ony­mous with cel­e­bra­tion. The great cham­pagne houses con­tinue to in­no­vate while the French cap­i­tal is pep­pered with fab­u­lous spots to en­joy cham­pagne or cham­pag­nebased cock­tails.

G.H. Mumm & Cie was founded in 1827 but it is sky­rock­et­ing into the 21st cen­tury with its pi­o­neer­ing spirit with its lat­est ob­jec­tive be­ing space. Af­ter three years of re­search, de­vel­op­ment and ex­per­i­men­ta­tion, the house has cre­ated Mumm Grand Cor­don Stel­lar, the first cham­pagne des­tined to be savoured in space. Work­ing with a team of ex­perts, en­gi­neers, re­searchers, de­sign­ers, as­tro­nauts and oe­nol­o­gists, the re­sult is cham­pagne that comes out of the bot­tle in a frothy foam that was tasted and tested in a weight­less­ness fly over of the vine­yards around Reims. But for mere earth­lings, the house’s sin­gu­lar and al­ways re­fresh­ingly con­sis­tent Cor­don Rouge re­mains a clas­sic, a sa­vant blend of Pinot Noir, Chardon­nay and Pinot Me­u­nier grapes then aged for three years. An­other en­tic­ing choice would be the Cor­don Rouge Brut Mil­lésime (vin­tage) 2012 with a high per­cent­age of Pinot Noir grapes

Cham­pagne with a view at the Bar Windo in the Hy­att Re­gency Paris Etoile Ho­tel

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