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Favorite Champagne houses in Reims and surrounding area

Favorite Champagne houses in Reims and surrounding area

Old Jul 13th, 2017, 12:19 PM
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Favorite Champagne houses in Reims and surrounding area

So, we FINALLY are planning a trip to Paris that is not over Christmas. We will likely take the TGV to Reims and want to visit at least 2 Champagne houses if not three. We love Champagne, especially Rose.

We have three in mind but are interested in hearing your experiences on visiting the region's Champagne houses. We would want to do more than a basic tasting. We've been to Moet et Chandon.

The three we have in mind are Billecart-Salmon in Mareuil-sur-Ay. Ruinart and Veuve Cliquot in Reims. We also love Bruno Paillard but not sure if they host visits or tastings.

If you have been to the ones we are thinking of, we would love to hear about your experiences there. If you have been to others, which do you recommend and why?

We have been to the cathedral in Reims before so we are not looking to visit it on this visit. If we have time, we will certainly pop in but this is all about the best bubbly in the world.
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Old Jul 13th, 2017, 12:47 PM
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Your three were exactly the ones I was going to suggest! You could possibly train to Epernay, taxi to Billecart-Salmon, then taxi to Le Crayeres in Reims for lunch then walk to the Veuve Clicquot then possibly walk (or taxi.....cannot remember exact locations....perhaps alcohol was involved) to Ruinart.

Actually 3 in one day and lunch might be too much. If I had to drop one it would be Veuve Clicquot
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Old Jul 13th, 2017, 01:01 PM
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I admit that I say it on every thread that concerns Reims, but please, someone visit St. Remi, the most beautiful church I've been to in France.

Where the Cathedral in Reims is massive and historic, St Remi is a historic jewel. Well worth a taxi ride and walk through.
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Old Jul 13th, 2017, 01:21 PM
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We visited Veuve last year and enjoyed the tour very much, but, were disappointed at the end when there was not a tasting...just one glass a person...of course, it was Le Grand Dame, but, I had hoped to taste more than the one.

I, too, love the roses,......Ruinart is delicious and this past time, I discovered Charles Heidseick Rose.....very nice!
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Old Jul 13th, 2017, 02:43 PM
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Judy, I was kinda thinking the same thing but I do love Veuve Cliquot. Traviata I think there are a few options at Veuve Cliquot for tours/tastings that give more options for more than one glass.

Tuscan...you have sold me. I am intrigued.
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Old Jul 13th, 2017, 04:42 PM
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We did this a few years ago. After visiting the Cathedral, we took the city bus to the Champagne houses. It drops you off by the aforementioned St. Remy, a beautiful Gothic basilica which is indeed worth at least a quick look. From there we stopped at the tasting room at Martel. They are based in Epernay but they have a branch in Reims. The friendly bartenders gave us an impromptu Champagne seminar with our tasting. From there we walked to Pommery which has a very nice and user friendly tasting room. Their Cuvee Louise was the best Champagne we tasted all day. Veuve Cliquot is right down the street. We had made reservations in advance for their tour which was interesting. They explain the history of the place, show you around the facility and take you down into the old Roman limestone caves where the Champagne is kept at the perfect temperature. The tour ends in the tasting room where you can try a variety of their top notch vintage Champagnes, some of it free and some of it for purchase. And you can buy just about anything you can imagine in the orange/yellow color with the Vueve Cliquot label on it. As much as you like Champagne, I know that you will enjoy this day trip.
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Old Jul 13th, 2017, 04:45 PM
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Is this in one day? If so, I also agree that two places is enough. I would recommend Clicquot. We had a glass at the end of the tour which wasn't enough. So, we bought a bottle and enjoyed it while there.
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Old Jul 13th, 2017, 07:05 PM
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Ah denisea, that's why I like you.
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Old Jul 13th, 2017, 08:11 PM
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Are there no tours in Hautvillers of Dom Perignon?? We were there years ago, it should be first and foremost IMO
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Old Jul 14th, 2017, 12:41 AM
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Whilst I love champagne and some of the big well known labels, one of the pleasures in visiting the area (to me anyway) is to call in on some of the smaller producers who make fantastic champagne. We normally drive around and call in on impulse and we've found some excellent wine. There was an interesting thread on TA a few years ago:

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowTo...Grand_Est.html

that you might find interesting, start at post #6. There's also Denis Frezier who gets good reviews.

There's also a Decanter article from last year that lists a few smaller growers:

http://www.decanter.com/learn/grower...o-know-270315/
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Old Jul 14th, 2017, 02:37 AM
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Thanks...Aliced, aside from being the inventor of Champagne...was there something that made the tour of Dom Perignon first and foremost for you?

Has anyone been to Alfred Gratien in Epernay? It's another favorite that is very difficult to find in the US but I know nothing about a tour there.

Rubicund...appreciate the info. I am sure it will be helpful and agree that many small producers are worth while. I am trying to locate a photo of a label we took ina restaurant here in Atlanta....small producer with excellent Rose (iCloud don't fail me now).

Roberta...just one day, I think. I do love how you solved your own problem at Veuve C...good work!!
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Old Jul 14th, 2017, 03:41 AM
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I think the Billecart-S is good choice, I would also consider one on the Epernay main drag just because the Avenue is so ... perfect and I would look at a small one out in the sticks.

https://www.champagne.fr/en/discover...nay-and-region

you can hire bikes from outside TI in Epernay

Dom Perignon did a fair number of great things but he also introduced exploding bottles of wine to Restaurants, it took the good people of Birmingham to discover how to make bottles that did not explode
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Old Jul 14th, 2017, 05:15 AM
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Visit Eperney too, so many xhampagne houses and a nice small town.
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Old Jul 15th, 2017, 09:05 AM
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Anything in Epernay that we should see or visit (besides the Champagne houses)? I do want more than tasting rooms on the visits....I love the caves, etc and learning a bit about the process and the families behind the brands.
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Old Jul 15th, 2017, 09:46 AM
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One of my favorites from that area is Haton......I especially love their rose Champagne.....
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Old Jul 15th, 2017, 10:00 AM
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If you decide to visit Veuve Clicquot in addition to Billecart-S, you might want to read "The Widow Clicquot" before your trip if you haven't already done so.
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Old Jul 15th, 2017, 10:04 AM
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Yes, I have read the book which is one of the reasons I do want to visit. Amazed at what she was able to do and with some very bad luck!
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Old Jul 24th, 2017, 06:04 AM
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Denise:

Problem solved:

https://www.belmond.com/afloat-in-fr...gne-and-alsace

You are welcome.
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Old Jul 24th, 2017, 10:04 AM
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Wow, this is a trip in itself. Looks quite a bit nicer than your average boat trip.
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Old Aug 6th, 2017, 07:33 AM
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Apparently, I am not the only one with Champagne visits on my mind. Two recent stories in Forbes and Vogue.

http://www.vogue.com/article/champag...e-tasting-tour

https://www.forbes.com/sites/juyoung.../#2ddbe25635e9
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