One of our favourite places to visit is the champagne region in France, This year we decided to go back to Moët & Chandon with friends to let them experience a tour of a large house and of course to pick up some champagne.
For almost 18 years we have been visiting Epernay in France for champagne tours and tastings. We could never tire of the beautiful countryside, relaxed atmosphere and the taste of champagne.
When we first visited the region we started by visiting the larger well known houses, some of these are geared towards tourists, Moët & Chandon is one of these, However it is a lovely place to visit with a fantastic tour that is very informative.
Moët & Chandon is situated at number 20 Avenue de champagne which is in the town of Epernay in the Vallée de al Marne. The house was founded in 1743 By Claude Moët and they are the largest producer and supplier of champagne in France, producing 26 million bottles a year most of which goes to the US as they are there biggest consumer.
There champagne making and sheer production has somewhat evolved over the years and we have even noticed a change in taste in the even time we have been going.
If you would like to book a tour of Moët & Chandon you can easily do this by booking online. A tour costs €23 euros with a tasting of their traditional champagne, you can choose to pay more for two glasses or a taste of their vintage champagne. Under 18s are €18 with no taster and children under 10 are free.
Your tour guide will tell you a short history on Moët & Chandon followed by a film showing you the production of champagne. You will then be taken on a tour of some of their cellars followed by a tasting of your chosen champagne.
The visit is by foot and lasts approximately 45 mins there are a few stairs but it is no way exhausting , the cellars have a natural temperature of between 10˚and 12˚ so you may need a light jacket. You will hear about the history, the growing of thier grapes and what goes into a vintage champagne. Their oldest champagne in the cellars is a vintage from 1869.
Moët & Chandon have 1,150 hectares of vineyards in around the region 50% are Grand cry and 25% are premier cru. They consist of vineyards that grow all three different varieties of grapes used to produce champagne, Chardonnay, Pinot noir and Pinot meunier. This in turn leads to a wide range and diversity of fruit to enable them to produce and select the best for their champagnes and grand vintage.
Before you visit the shop you will have your tasting of champagne, it’s well worth doing the taster with the traditional and rosé its nice to try them together. You will finish the tour with the chance to purchase some champagne. However we have been reminded previously that its not a cash and carry! The shop is truly beautiful with a wide range of champagnes, glasses and accessories. Pick up your traditional brut, a bottle of Moët ice or a bottle stopper as a souvenir of your visit.
Moët & Chandon is the perfect start to your exploration of champagne and just a small look at what there is to offer.
We soon came to realise that the independent growers in Premier and Grand Cru villages produce some fantastic wines for very reasonable prices, plus the fun is tasting them and finding them, We have since visited many hope you look forward to seeing these insights. I’m always looking forward to planning my next trip.
Stay tuned for more champagne tours.