Champagne

Enjoying a wine break, a wine bar tour or an exclusive wine tasting in Paris as part of my Right Foot, Left Foot and Culinary Touring can serve as a fine introduction to the wine regions of France for those with no time for an excursion out of the city. But there’s nothing like discovering the vineyards themselves, meeting welcoming producers, savoring a fine lunch, and exploring nearby sights, towns and villages, all of which are possible on an easy-going daytrip.

The major wine region that’s closest to Paris is the champagne winegrowing region. The vineyards begin around Chateau-Thierry, just 60 miles northeast of Paris, while the heart of the wine region (Epernay, Reims and the Mountain of Reims) is another 30 miles on. That makes for an easy daytrip for the joy of champagne discoveries.

Even if you’ve got your heart set on visiting the producer of your favorite big-brand champagne, visiting a small producer or two will help you better understand the variety of champagnes beyond the branding. Indeed, champagne is a sparkling wine with more variety than most people imagine, with various percentage combinations of the region’s three major grapes (chardonnay, pinot noir, pinot meunier), varying quality within each varietal, and various levels of added sugar. Read some of these articles of mine for about champagne and other wine touring in France.

I hook up with some sparkling professionals to offer travelers the opportunity to get intimate with bubbly through personalized encounters with small producers and insightful tastings.

For a daytrip, there are two champagne-growing areas to visit, each allowing fascinating introduction or deeper explorations into the sparkling wine of champagne.

  1. The Reims-Epernay zone, the heart of the region and home to many of the major champagne houses. If interested, you’ll have the opportunity to see on a daytrip than vineyards alone: the cathedral of Reims and the room where the armistice of WWII was signed.
  2. Chateau-Thierry and surroundings. If interested, you’ll have the opportunity on this daytrip of seeing an important American World War I sight and cemetery.

I always speak by phone with travelers before designing a daytrip, so I’ll be able to explain to you the advantages of one approach or one zone over another for your travel party.

Burgundy

The prestigious Burgundy vineyards of the Côte d’Or, with the town of Beaune at its center, lend themselves to a visit longer than a daytrip. Though a full-day tour of the Beaune zone is possible, with the inclusion of a couple of notable wine encounters, as a daytrip you’ll prefer exploring the chardonnay vineyards in the northern portion of Burgundy, such as Chablis or Vézelay. Those Burgundy appellations are a 2½-hour drive from Paris and lend themselves to a daytrip of exceptional encounters, an enjoyable lunch and sightseeing in Northern Burgundy as well.

Loire Valley

If you prefer discovering variations on the theme of sauvignon blanc rather than chardonnay then let’s instead head off to border of Burgundy and the Loire Valley, about a 2-hour drive from Paris, with Pouilly Fumé vineyards on the Burgundy side of the Loire and Sancerre on the other side.

Other than the wine-winning Sancerre-Pouilly portion of the Loire Valley, the better-known castle-rich portion of the valley also has vineyards. But a daytrip to that portion would focus more on castles and gardens, with a side order of wine touring. Inquire about the possibilities.

  • Cost & Conditions

    My wine-oriented daytrips from Paris typically costs about 1200-1400€ for two, plus 50-100€ per additional person depending on the precise itinerary, the producers visited and lunch options. A clear estimate can only be given once I know more about your interests, your group and the destination.

    Overnights:
    With a primary focus on wine touring, Champagne, Burgundy and the Loire Valley should also be considered for an overnight if you don’t have the time for a more prolonged in the countryside. Choose your wine or your grape varietal and we’ll discuss the possibilities. Groups of 4 or more wine-lovers might also inquire about an exceptional 3-day wine tour combining Champagne and Burgundy.

Let’s start planning!

Use this form to pre-book a tour or to request further information about specific tours, event planning and consulting services for Paris or elsewhere in France. The more you can tell me about your interests and your travel party, the better I can personalize a response.

Provide your phone number if you would like me to call you for a 5-10-minute no-obligation chat about your upcoming trip.

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