I was in Reims, France with the lovely Veuve Clicquot team to learn every little thing about champagne and learn about their latest creation, CLICQUOT RICH. We began our trip at the exclusive Hotel Du Marc. It’s a luxurious house turned private estate owned by the Veuve Clicquot family, and only used to host parties and invited guests. Talk about one very special experience.
But let’s start from the beginning. “Veuve” means widow in French and it was Madame Clicquot who took over the family champagne business when her husband died unexpectedly, leaving her widowed at a young age. The company then became called Veuve Clicquot and we believe it was their daughter Clementine who was the inspiration for the iconic yellow seen on the label. Madame Clicquot had some major girl power. Back in the day, women weren’t ones running businesses, but Madame Clicquot is what I like to call a GIRL BOSS. She wanted to continue the family business, perfect the production of her wine, and build the luxurious Veuve Clicquot brand.
Now let me take you back to Hotel Du Marc. This extremely chic hotel has a brilliant library, a dining room unlike anything I’ve ever seen, and a stunning lavender staircase, inspired by the rich hues of the grapes used in each wine. On the second floor are rooms that each represent a different country. I fell in love with the seafoam green walls of the guest bedroom representing France, and the extra large pink kimono draping along the wall of the Japanese room. Each part of this hotel was breathtaking. It was only a short drive from the Veuve Clicquot cellars… where the wine is made, left to age for years, before being distributed and enjoyed all around the world.
I am so excited to introduce you to Veuve Clicquot Rich. Rich is inspired by mixology, and that’s why we call it CLICQUOLOGY. Clicquot Rich is a bit more sweet due to its higher concentration of sugar. It’s meant for drinking in a large wine glass, served over ice, and accompanied with fresh ingredients including pineapple, celery, tea, pepper, cucumber, or grapefruit. For me, I personally love adding in the green and red bell peppers. The spice gives it all a little kick! It’s delicious and refreshing. It’s totally my summer rooftop drink. My friends are going to be obsessed. And it’s nice going to champagne for a change, over a wine or a classic cocktail. I love this new, innovative take on mixology and champagne.
CLICQUOLOGY took a while to perfect. Finding the right amount of sweetness. Finding the right fruits and veggies that complement the champagne well. But it was worth the wait!
Here is a little insight on what goes into producing champagne. This process takes 4 years!
1. The grapes are harvested by hand in September in the vineyards of Reims, France.
2. Gentle press to a juice, then it becomes base wine and goes through fermentation.
3. It’s blended and bottled in February to sit for 3 years.
4. The second fermentation. Yeast and sugar are added and natural carbon dioxide.
5. Open the bottle, remove the years, and add alcohol.
6. Last step is dosage. This determines if you are making something sweet or dry, or something really potent, like a dessert wine. The Clicquot Rich is in between. It’s not a vintage. It’s a bit more sweet and made to be mixed with fruits or vegetables to enhance the champagne’s flavor.
So now you know a bit about champagne, straight from the city of Reims! See you at the NYC polo match this weekend.