Wednesday, October 17, 2012

C comme Champagne

 Yesterday I went to the French Comité Champagne's Grand Tasting.

 53 Champagne maisons/houses were represented.
 A plethora of fine brands, many not available in the US yet. It's a grand fete/soiree of gouter/tasting.

 Yet tasting is a serious business. This is for trade and press only. You're given a notebook + pen to make salient notes on each gulp.

 Last year's tasting was held at the Plaza.

 So many houses. How to choose? But one must taste Bolly, Sweetie darling mustn't one...

 About a tablespoon of sparkling wine is poured into your glass.
Swish, twirl, sniff, observe and taste.
Le mousse - look for abundant bubbles. Le nez or nose may have notes of brioche, red berries, butter and toast or honey, polish and peasches for example. Never swirl Champagne inside the mouth. The carbon dioxide dulls the tastebuds. On the palate look for balance, smoothness, acidity, refinement.

The rep from the maison will inform you of the percentage of grapes in his maison's blend - Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, ChardonnayThree wines were on offer at each house. A Brut, Rose, vintage or Reserve.

 After tasting (in the mouth only) spit and empty your glass. British wine expert Serena Suttcliff practiced spitting geysers in the bathtub by the way.

Between tasting and spitting fromage et fruit is available to cleanse the palate and keep you upright.

What to wear to a Champagne tasting? This woman left her horse at the door.

You can never go wrong wearing black.

Do you love the Perriet Jouet Belle-Epoch flower bottles too?

 For Christmas PJ has a pretty embroidered gift wrap tied with a pink satin ribbon. To-die-for.

After an hour of tasting (I have the capacity of a gnat) I twirled out the door in my ballerinas.


  1. Oo la la...everything about this post makes me wish I were you. If you ever need a body double for when being in the thick of the social whirl gets to be too dizzying, call me.

    1. Y'all come!
      I get dizzy fast when it comes to Champagne!

  2. Love yr sketches!
    Would you ever think about running a watercolor class and shopping trip in Paris?

  3. I love your blog, Carol.
    Thanks for taking us along - so fun to waltz in your ballerinas.

  4. No matter what, I ALWAYS have a bottle of champagne in the fridge. You never know when you might need a glass of bubbly. Now I think I must also keep a tutu in my closet! Cheers!

    1. Yr the BEST Connie!
      Claude Taittinger said,
      "Champagne is for everyday - a celebration!"

  5. Gulliver Swift3:39 PM

    I like the spontaneous look of your champagne sketch! Loads of fun

  6. I love black..:-)
    The watercolor is so nice too..
    I had tutus..not the figure for them..but I wore them..Mary Beetles School Of Dance..:-)
    Some things stay with you..

    Your posts..are always entertaining and varied..and oh so colorful.

    1. sadly...I have never worn a tutu pink or otherwise..I wanted to though.

  7. The watercolor is great, and the photos illustrate the story perfectly. I love the people shots, the women and how they are dressed for the event.
    The spitting seems a bit "off" to me :)

  8. love your fab sketch & the pink tutu. What fun to spend the day tasting champagne.I couldn't spit it out, what a waste, my favourite is pink cahampange. Cheers.

    1. Cahampange is an excellent maison
      You have la bon gout!

  9. My comment looks as if I've been drinking champagne all day,can't even spell it ,Ha ha !! oh well it must have been because I was just thinking about pink champagne.

  10. Do they make the Perrier Jouet bag in my size? I'd like to attend the holiday parties in one! (No, I haven not been swallowing instead of spitting).

  11. What an event! Looks fabulous. I really want to try that PJ Belle-Epoch, I've never had it, and the bottle looks so extraordinary.

  12. oops - where did that message go? And I'm sober, too. Was trying to say I LOVE that painting of yours, Carol. Champagne and macarons. What more to life? Wonderful, dahlink.

  13. Sounds fun--great photos, Carol, and wonderful watercolor up there. I'm off to San Fran in a minute here and saw your email, so good to catch up before I go. Take good care...xo

  14. ps
    Is this watercolor up here for sale, Carol? If so, put my name on it, s'il vous plait?

    I'll get back to you if it is...that is, if someone else hasn't already snapped it up.

  15. Aurélie2:46 PM

    great post! I love it.

    more champagne! please!

    your comment with the horse ist very funny!


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