Paris is unique, elegant, artistic and rich with history. The city is gorgeous, the food is to die for, the fashion is unreal, and the people are charming. After doing some research though, we discovered that Reims, France, famous for holding some of the most incredible champagne cellars in France, was just a 40 minute train ride away. We quickly decided a day trip to Champagne Country was a must. We were pleasantly surprised to learn the rail service in Europe is very efficient and makes visiting other towns and cities a breeze. The train from Paris to Reims was spotless, the seats reclined, and the view was beautiful!
Our first champagne tour of the day was at G.H. Mumm & Co. Our guide shared her excellent knowledge of the history of this champagne company and of champagne production. She took us down to the cellars and walked us through each phase of the process, which was fascinating! Keep in mind, you descend 10 meters at a time and it gets rather chilly. I made the mistake of not bringing a jacket and definitely wished I had. But the 60 minute tour was so engaging, the time passed quickly and it was well worth the shivering – especially since the tour ended with champagne tastings. I tried the Rose Champagne and my husband, Blake, tasted the Classic G.H. Mumm Champagne. I was pleasantly surprised that in the end I preferred the Classic. It was smooth, light and very refreshing.
Afterward, we strolled through the city of Reims and visited the famous Cathedral Notre-Dame de Reims. This architectural wonder is absolutely breathtaking and we were amazed at its impressive size. We spent over an hour admiring the magnificent sculptures, the to die for stained glass and tons of intricate details. It boggles my mind to think about how they were able to construct such a magnificent structure without modern day tools and technology. Before we left, we took a few minutes in a beautiful, quiet area to just sit and pray. And, bonus, admittance is free.
We wrapped up our day with a 40 minute tour at Taittinger. The tour guide was wonderful, knowledgeable and friendly and the caves are impressive. We learned a lot about the history of the vineyard and, I think, we both have a greater appreciation for the process and why champagne is soooooo expensive! Our tour ended with a champagne tasting that was delightful and you have several options to choose from when picking your tastings. We tasted a variety of champagnes, but my favorite was the Classic. Are you noticing a trend??
Overall, it was a lovely day in Reims. Between the two tours, I’d say G.H. Mumm and Co. was the better one … it covered every question you could probably think of and I found it more interesting. But if I had to choose the best champagne, I would have to pick Taittinger. Either way, you can’t go wrong with these tours.
If you ever get to Paris and have a thirst for champagne, I highly recommend a visit to Reims. It’s a perfect little day trip if you love quaint, beautiful towns and, of course, a little bubbly ;)
Keep an eye out for my next post featuring Prague! You won't be disappointed!
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