I have most recently been consumed by Champagne, figuratively, of course :). I virtually met with Charlotte Le Gallais, a fifth-generation Champagne grower from the Champagne region of France. It is exciting to meet someone so young with so much passion for what she does, but understanding where she works every day may help explain this. Her family’s property was originally owned by Madame Veuve Clicquot and the castle built by Madame Clicquot in 1843 remains there.
Madame Clicquot created the first known vintage Champagne in 1810 and invented the riddling table process to clarify Champagne in 1816. In 1818, she invented the first known blended rosé Champagne by blending still red and white Champagne wines. This process is still used today by the majority of Champagne producers. During the Napoleonic Wars, Madame Clicquot made strides in establishing her wine in royal courts throughout Europe, notably that of Imperial Russia. She played an important role in establishing Champagne as a favored drink of high society and nobility throughout Europe. It must be inspiring for Charlotte to be following in the footsteps of such a trailblazer!
There are over 19,000 independent growers in the Champagne region. Around 5,000 of these growers produce wine from their own grapes, Le Gallais being one of them.
A friend told me about a book she was reading, The Widow Clicquot. I finished it this morning. (Order it, you will not regret it.) Fun fact, Veuve means widow in French. 😉
The next time I’m in Paris, I will be hopping on a train for a quick 45-minute ride to meet Charlotte and sip some Champagne!
“Always believe that something wonderful is about to happen.” – Coco Chanel