There are famous wine-places all over France. Reims is one of them. Reims is an important city in the champagne-region. Champagne is a sparkling wine from France.
It can be made from the grape-varieties Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. The first one is a white variety and the other two are red grapes. You have to know that the juice of all the wine-grapes doesn’t have any colour. So what gives the wine its colour? The skin of the red grape varieties gives the red wine or rosé its color. It only depends on how long you let the skin macerate in the grape-juice. In the Champagne you can also make rosé champagne by blending still white wine with 5 to 20% red wine from the Champagne.
You can produce in the Champagne region also a ‘blanc de noirs’. That means a white champagne made from red grapes. Its quality can be judged by how long the sparkling  stays in your mouth and how delicate the bubbles in the product are.
When we are in Reims we always like to go first to Patisserie ‘L’Opéra. Over there they make some delicious pastry and they serve very nice espresso.
This year on the first of September we saw a brand new champagne-shop across the street. The shop from champagne-winery ‘Pol Couronne’ opened its doors in December 2016. The private champagne-house ‘Pol Couronne’ was founded in 1887 by Pol Auguste Couronne. He was born in Hautvillers (county Marne) on the 22nd of October 1862. Hautvillers is the place where it all started for champagne. This village was the birth- place of the monk Dom Perignon who invented the ‘méthode champenoise’.
The reputation of Pol Auguste Couronne and the quality of its champagne became so famous that he got the notorious title ‘Chevalier du Merite Agricole’ (Knight of the Agricultural Merit).
The fifth generation, jean-Baptiste Prévost, is now in charge of this champagne-house. It is a small family business with 6 ha of vineyard.
Today at ‘Pol Couronne’ they make six kind of champagne: ‘Brut’, ‘Brut Rosé’, ‘Le Blanc de Blancs’ (100% Chardonnay), a vintage year (now  2008)’, ‘the brut grand cru ‘75-25’ (75% Pinot Noir and 25% Chardonnay) and the rosé de saignée (It is a method of rosé production that involves bleeding off the juice after limited contact with the grape-skins).
If you want to try several of their champagnes you can take one of their ‘formulas’.
With the first formula ‘La formule découverte’ (the discovery formula) you get the Brut, a glass of the Brut Rosé and the Brut grand cru 75-25 for € 16,-. With the second formula ‘La formule prestige’ (the formula prestige) you get the Brut grand cru 75-25, a glass of Brut Extra Blanc de Blancs and a glass of the 2008  vintage for € 22,- It all depends on your budget and your preference which one you like to take. Both formulas are very good.
In my capacity as a culinary journalist and as a champagne amateur I have tasted a lot of good and also mediocre champagne but I can honestly say that the champagnes of Pol Couronne’ are very good.

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