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Tasting Stars at Moet & Chandon

overcast 16 °C

"Come quickly! I am tasting the stars" - Dom Perignon


Foodie moment

Our first foody moment is a bit of a sneaky one as it is fast food, but it was so good it can't be ignored. A butcher in Epernay creates these amazing gourmet burgers with mozerella, salad, herbs and sauces in a Turkish bread roll. Delicious! (and cheap)


Today I thought we would give our bodies a small rest from cheese for our aperitif and instead we bought some Pate (or terrines). We got a gourmet pack of three flavours - terrine de canarde aux figues (Duck with figs) , Terrine de canard au piment d'espelette (Duck with chilli)and Confit de foie de porc aux poivrons rouge and olives (Pork with red capsicum and olives). Even Mark enjoyed them!


Wow moment

Today we toured the famous cellars of Moet & Chandon. Hidden in 28km of underground passages are countless numbers of bottles of champagne in their various stages of maturity. The sheer number of bottles is overwhelming, but apparently there is still not enough to match demand! Our guide said there is a bottle of Moet & Chandon popped somewhere in the world every two seconds - and at 40 Euro a bottle that is basically a licence to print money


Today we finally got to hire some bikes and go for a bike ride. The bikes were really cool, and it was fun zooming between the different Champagne houses. It was also a whole lot easier than walking, and our feet are thanking us now.


What we learnt today

The tour of Moet & Chandon Champagne house taught us some amazing facts.

The Champagne bottle holds up to 6kg of pressure. In the olden days, 50% of bottles used to shatter and explode whilst sitting in the cellar - not a same place to be! Now its more like 1 in 10,000 bottles.

Dom Perignon perfected the art of making Champagne. He was a monk in town near Epernay and he was looking to discover how to turn ordinary white wine into something special!

There are a group of wine makers who test and taste the grapes, juice and wine at all stages. They decide the proportions of wines to use to make their imperial brand. They may include up to 100 different wines in a batch. Now you can see why it is so hard to replicate!

One of the stages of wine making is that the bottle is kept upside down on an angle, and worker needs to turn each bottle a quarter turn each day and increase the angle the bottle is on until it is eventually completely upside down. This is called riddling. This process is to collect up all the sediment in the champagne and move it into the neck of the bottle to remove it. The workers in Moet & Chandon turn at least 50,000 bottles each, each day!

Epernay is the perfect place for growing Champagne as it rains 200 days of the year - didn't really surprise us as it has rained SO much since we've been here, although the sun HAS just come through now at 6pm on our last night!

Posted by travellinglise 02:07 Archived in France

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From Jessika batten

by Jessika batten

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