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Explore the Best Wineries in Côte des Blancs

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On your journey through the ever-so-famous wine region of Champagne, we highly recommend you to be sure to stop at the Côte des Blancs. This is a highly regarded sub-region with an abundance of prestige and high quality wines for your every need. It stretches for around 20 km and has a vineyard area of 3,313 hectares. The Côte des Blancs is an eastern-facing slope that owes its name to the color of the grape that is planted: 95% Chardonnay. Champagnes in this area include "blanc de blancs". Côte des Blancs’s wine is quite unique. This is due to its own climate, soil, and winemaking techniques which produce distinctive flavors and styles that are found nowhere else in France or the world.

Check out the best wine tastings and tours in Côte des Blancs Wine Region

Terrior of Côte des Blancs

In order for a grape vine to be successful, many factors come into play. There are physical variations in soil that can have a profound impact on the growth habit and resultant grape fruit. Chemical differences are subtle. They include acidity combined with alkalinity, macronutrient availability, micronutrient availability and so on. People are deeply interconnected with the environment and each other - as is evident in the endless nuances of flavor that can create in grape, must, or wine. The grapevine’s growth is influenced by environmental factors, like the climate and sunlight. Neither presence nor absence of these components will determine how the grape tastes, but they do directly influence how much sugar and other biochemical compounds are present in the fruit. More importantly, they also determine if each stripe of a wine will be tannic or not.

Côte des Blancs Wine Characteristics 

The best-performing wines typically have a classic Chardonnay style that is native to the Côte des Blancs AOC region. This means a combination of good concentration without overripeness or too much of an impression of “sweetness of fruit”, high acidity that contributes freshness and firmness, and a prominent mineral character.In principle, all the major Champagne houses with access to grapes from the entire region source the Chardonnay for their prestige Champagnes from "The Hill."  Côte des Blancs wine region is able to produce wines of unprecedented elegance with wonderful structure. The soils in the region are very chalky and acidic, which works to its advantage for sparkling wines. For example, many sparkling wine producers from this area use a lot of Chardonnay because it often combines with the high acidity of the soil to give them a buttery mouthfeel. For best results, only Chardonnay is planted on east-facing slopes in Champagne. This produces the best quality and most consistent grapes.

Food to pair with Côte des Blancs Wine

1. Steak tartare

Steak tartare is one of the most popular appetizers on the menu. It is typically made with meager cuts of raw beef seasoned with salt, pepper, and Worcestershire sauce. Some restaurants might even add Tabasco or mustard! When served, steak tartare is usually accompanied by toasted bread, rye bread, or french fries. It is believed that steak tartare was originally a variation on beefsteack à l'Américaine, a dish of raw chopped beefsteak that first appeared in France in 1902 when it was served with chopped onion and "croûtons", which are fried. This variation of beef tartare, originally served with a sauce, was known as 'à la tartare', hence the name. It pairs well with Côte des Blancs wines.

2. Gratin

'Au gratin' is a common term in the culinary world, meaning 'oven-baked'. It's general process consists of placing food on an oven-safe dish with a breadcrumb or cheese topping and baking it in the oven. In the 16th century or as early as the 17th century, the word gratin referred to the burnt, crispy bits of a dish that were stuck to the bottom of a pan. There was no other way to scrape them off since they could not be cooked again.

Today, gratin refers to any dish with a crispy baked topping. The ingredients for gratin most often include cream, grated cheese, and breadcrumbs or a combination of the three. This method gives the au gratin effect to a dish by quickly browning the top of it before you put it in the oven. This is a popular way to prepare foods that would be served with a nice crispy crust on top.

Provençal lace is a type of needlework that originated in Provence, but has since become very popular.Potatoes are a commonly used veggie, but gratin dishes also make use of seafood, meat and pasta. Some ways to cook with gratin include stir-fries, soups and risotto. Dauphinoise potatoes are more often savoury dishes that include milk and cheese. Gratin goes well with Côte des Blancs wines.

3. Ratatouille

This colorful Provençal vegetable ragout is traditionally made with simple, easily accessible ingredients: courgettes, eggplants, green and red peppers, tomatoes, onions, garlic, and parsley. This recipe will also house in a few more surprises as you go along. Ratatouille has connotations of cooking (specifically, even the name comes from an old Occitan and French word meaning "to toss or stir"). Typical ratatouille ingredients are onions, green bell peppers, red bell peppers, tomatoes and zucchini.

By the 1980s, ratatouille was already a popular dish. It had been around for decades before it became popularized. Ratatouille is a hot or cold dish that can both be served with or without toasted garlic bread. It is very versatile, so it is best enjoyed by most people (especially on its own) alongside smaller dishes like meat entrees.

Places to visit near Côte des Blancs

1. Museum of the Surrender

The museum in Reims is a must-see if you're in Europe. It commemorates the history of World War II and is located at the site of the unilateral surrender on May 8th, 1945, which was led by Marshal Ferdinand Foch. The museum itself has a lot to offer its visitors with a variety of items to see and models to peruse.

2. Cathedrale Notre-Dame de Reims

A cathedral in Reims, France dedicated to the Virgin Mary that is also the archiepiscopal see of the Archdiocese of Reims. It was traditionally where kings were crowned but today it's home to many tourists.

3. Visit Villa Demoiselle in Reims

Villa Demoiselle which was built in 1908 is a well-known and desired architectural landmark, with a stunning splendor that has been restored over the years. The owners' passion not only provided restoration options but also brought new opportunities to the property, which underwent renovation in 2008.A visit to the historic Villa d'Eau, with a Champage tasting tour can be a great alternative to doing the city on your own - save time a effort.

Frequently asked questions about

Côte des Blancs Wine Region

Is Côte des Blancs a wine region worth visiting?

Côte des Blancs wine region is worth visiting, The Côte des Blancs region is made up of some beautiful landscapes, a few interesting wine vineyards.

What is the best time to visit Côte des Blancs?

The best time to visit Côte des Blancs is in May, June, July and September. This time of the year is the most pleasant.

What is Côte des Blancs famous for?

The Côte des Blancs is an East-facing hillside to the South of Epernay famous for growing Chardonnay. The region of Burgundy France has long been a hotspot for grape growers around the world.

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Just getting started on your wine journey, or jumping back in?
Taste through a selection of a great local wines.

Wineries in Côte des Blancs