The story of Champagne goes beack to the 14th century when monks produced wines for church ceremonies. It is disputed whether the first Champagne was made intentionally or if the bubbly came about by accident. Either way the first bubbles were a result of dormant yeast being reactivated when – after bottling and cellaring in the autumn – temperatures went up in the spring causing a 2nd fermentation in the closed bottle leading to carbonation. And voila! Méthode Champenoise was “invented”.
The bubble art became quickly fashionable when French kings were crowned and had other celebrations in Champagne’s regional capital of Reims – and visiting royal guests spread the word about the majestic French bubbles to the rest of Europe.
Today champagne continues to be associated with celebrations – and for good reason. Any proper celebration deserves a great bubble!
Champagne enjoys a unique terroir with oceanic influence yielding mild winters and cool – but sunny – summers. Hills provide for excellent drainage and widespread limestone in the soil retains water throughout the growth season.
There is no need to wait for an occasion to pop a good Champagne. Champagne is extremely versatile and goes pretty much with any kind of food, including creamy brie cheese, shrimp, shellfish, salmon, fried fish, Mediterranean tapas, fruit- based deserts and more.
A lady heading one of the Champagne estates once said: “I drink it when I’m happy and when I’m sad. Sometimes I drink it when I’m alone. When I have company I consider it obligatory. I trifle with it if I’m not hungry and drink it when I am. Otherwise I never touch it – unless I’m thirsty...” Enjoy!