If you are organizing this trip or you are just thinking about it, you are wondering which wineries to visit in the Champagne area.
The answer as always is: it depends on what interests you.
Do you want to know everything about Champagne?
If you want to know everything about Champagne we recommend you take part in a guided tour in one of the great Maison of one of the two capitals of Champagne, Reims the official one and Épernay the self-proclaimed one.
Whichever Maison you choose, from Moët & Chandon to Veuve Cliquot, you will always fall well. Each Maison offers a guided tour with one or more final tastings, I advise you to buy the cheapest tour (often includes a tasting anyway) and save money to sip more Champagne around the two cities.
Which Maison to choose?
The big Maison are all located in the Champagne area between Reims and Épernay.
Probably almost all the Maison, which organize guided tours, would deserve a visit but they are all paid and I sincerely prefer to spend the money on glasses of Champagne rather than on visits to the cellars.
We have chosen two. Partly starting from the name, partly on the suggestion of friends, we went from Taittinger to Reims and from Moët & Chandon to Épernay.
The tours take place a bit ‘all the same way: presentation of the company with stories and historical anecdotes about the family, visit the cellars with adjoining lesson about types of grapes used and the various stages of production of Champagne as the riddling , the dosage and the dégorgement .
Between the two Maison visited what we have seen is that Moët & Chandon is a step forward, not for the quality of Champagne which is already very high, but for the qualities of corporate marketing.
Unlike Taittinger who takes you to the tasting in the lobby where you wait before leaving for the visit. Moët & Chandon no, they have a dedicated room for tasting with a golden logo behind the sommeliers in order to give everyone the opportunity to take a photo in front of Moët & Chandon, the great ones! Who is it that didn’t take a picture in front of that brand? We too!