A Toast to Champagne Tastes
A Toast to Champagne Tastes
Monday, January 2, 2006
Resolve to make 2006 the year your dream of living in France will come true…
If you’ve always dreamed of moving to France, starting a new life in Paris, enjoying a “pied-à-terre” of your own part of the year or perhaps investing in property in France, these power-packed Living and Investing in France Conferences are a must.
Dear Parler Paris Reader,
When I give a party, I usually send an “Evite” with a message: “Bring anything that comes in a bottle.” This past New Year’s Eve was no different. Usually, the guests bring wine, but I can also count on one or two bringing something a little more creative…like good virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar or aromatherapy bubble bath (while not potable, very welcome gifts, too!).
On New Year’s Eve, however, the “default beverage for celebratory toasts is champagne,” a phrase coined by Linda Wertheimer, a journalist for NPR in an article about a new book out by Don and Petie Kladstrup titled “Champagne: How the World’s Most Glamorous Wine Triumphed Over War and Hard Times.”
According to husband and wife team Kladstrup, champagne was not always called champagne, nor was it the white, bubbly wine we know today. NPR has reprinted an excerpt from the book’s chapter one, “The Monarch and the Monk.” Just to give you a “taste” of the fascinating champagne story, the opening two paragraphs are sure to entice yo to read more…
They were born the same year and died the same year, and yet, they could not have been more different. One lived in absolute luxury, the other in abject poverty. One prided himself on his long, curly locks, the other shaved his head. One wore red high heels, the other simple sandals. One garbed himself in silk and velvet, the other in rough brown linen.
But Louis XIV and Dom Perignon had one thing in common: both loved champagne, or, more precisely, the wine that would become champagne. Despite their differences, no two individuals did more to launch champagne on its path to fame and glory.
Wikipedia reports that “In Europe and most other countries, the name “champagne” is legally protected as part of the Treaty of Madrid (1891) to mean only sparkling wine produced in its namesake region and adhering to the standards defined for that name as an Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée.”
Saturday night, almost everyone entered with a chilled bottle in hand, several wrapped in thermal blankets to keep them cool, one in a luscious black velvet sack with a golden tie and others in special boxes. Every few moments, we could hear a cork pop over the music and the bubbles inevitably spilled over a few glasses making a slippery mess on the tile floor.
The bubbles, as explained by Wikipedia, “…are commonly believed to be formed in impurities in the glass that act as nucleation sites. Champagne glasses may be intentionally etched by the manufacturer to provide a consistent source of bubble nucleation sites. However, etching aside, in general, the bubbles form on cellulose fibres, either from dust in the air, or left over from the wiping/drying process.”
Champagne is mostly fermented in two sizes of bottles — standard bottle (750 ml), and Magnum (1.5 liter). In general, Magnums are thought to be higher quality, as there is less oxygen in the bottle, and the volume to surface area favors the creation of appropriately-sized bubbles.
Other bottle sizes, named for Biblical figures, are generally filled with Champagne that has been fermented in standard bottles or magnums. Here’s what you might find:
No one entered with anything as large as a Melchizedek! Or even a Magnum, for that matter or for no matter…but, I stopped counting how many glasses I had early in the evening and still, there was plenty left for a future party.
When should we pop the cork next?
A la prochaine…
P.S. For more information or to order “Champagne: How the World’s Most Glamorous Wine Triumphed Over War and Hard Times,” click here: /parlerparis/books/cuisine.html
P.P.S. Two events with which to mark your new 2006 agenda: January 10th Parler Paris Après Midi and January 14th Parler Parlor Galettes des Rois Party!
Mayor Bertrand Delanöe is encouraging owners of vacant apartments to renovate and rent their properties. With the assistance of the Société immobilière d’économie mixte de la Ville de Paris (S.I.E.M.P.), Paris is the first city to present this concept to assist proprietors in their endeavors free of charge and to utilize tax reforms to help increase occupancies…Subscribers Read On…
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LE COUDE FOU
Just down the block is the elegant and pricey Mariage Frères Salon de Thé and across the street is one of the best hair cutters in Paris, Peter Gadge. For such a small street, there are lots of wonderful shops and restaurants, including Le Coude Fou. Over the past several years, Le Coude Fou has become one of my regular “cantines” because the choices always change, the food is always great, the atmosphere perfectly inviting and comfortable and the service friendly and welcoming. The wine list is the most impressive aspect, as this is one of the neighborhood’s favorite “bistrot à vins” and the wine which is served with the fixed-price menu is much better quality than the usual “vin de maison.” This is the kind of restaurant that reminds me why I like living in Paris and I can go there often never to be disappointed…
* Let us help you find your perfect Paris apartment. With a one-on-one consultation in person or by phone, you’ll get the answers you need and the help you want. Book your appointment today! /parlerparis/services/consultationservices.html
* Make sure your money goes as far as you do! Save money when transferring from dollars to euros! HiFX takes the pain and guesswork out of currency conversion. For more information, click here: /frenchproperty/insider/currencyonlineconvertor.html
* Practice your French or English in a fun and friendly environment with interesting people from all over the world at Parler Parlor. We reopen January 3 and come for the Galettes des Rois Party on January 14th!…visit http://www.parlerparlor.com
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