Dom Pérignon Tour: History & Experience of the Champagne House

Dom Pérignon Tour: History & Experience of the Champagne House

Are you a champagne connoisseur or beginning to discover the fascinating world of wine? If sure, you’ve ALL the explanations to get excited with this overview. I’ve ready an intensive information to the world-famous and extremely prized first vintage-only champagne, Dom Pérignon.

In this Dom Pérignon tour, you’ll be taught concerning the historical past of this well-known French champagne model and its founder Dom Pierre Pérignon, a benedictine monk, that has impressed a few of the world’s best wine creators.

You’ll additionally know how you can get there and what to anticipate in your go to—together with whether or not it’s attainable to style solely the perfect grapes your self.

History of Dom Pierre Pérignon

Statue of Dom Pierre Perignon at Moet & Chandon

Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

Dom Pierre Pérignon is synonymous with luxurious, extravagance, and naturally, champagne. As Pierre acknowledged in September 1694, his aim was to develop “the perfect wine on this planet,” and his work with Pinot Noir paved the way in which.

Pierre’s story started within the small village of Hautvillers in 1638 when he was ordained as a Benedictine monk. Pierre turned identified for his ardour for winemaking and his eye for high quality.

He turned essentially the most famend “chef de Cave” or cellar grasp (or actually “cave chief”) of his time. He carried out many methods to enhance the method of constructing wine, a lot of that are nonetheless used to at the present time.

In 1668, Pierre was appointed as cellarmaster of the Abbey of Hautvillers. And he made some excellent contributions to the world of fantastic wine.

Pierre’s greatest contribution to the world of wine was his improvement and perfection of champagne manufacturing. It is alleged that he as soon as tasted a glass of bubbly from one in all his bottles and exclaimed, “I’m ingesting stars!”

Only just a few vineyards within the Champagne area have been designated as Grand Cru. To be labeled as Grand Cru, the champagne should be made utilizing grapes from these vineyards.

Dom Pérignon classic is created with grapes from Grand Cru vineyards. Each mix additionally contains grapes from the unique Premier Cru property within the Abbey of Hautvillers.

During his time on the abbey, Pierre experimented with mixing totally different grapes. He pressed methods to create what we all know immediately as Dom Pérignon. His legacy lives on in each bottle that bears his identify, a reminder of the significance historical past has in shaping our present-day tradition.

Where is Dom Pérignon in France?

Front of Moet and Chandon in Epernay, France
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

Dom Pérignon is situated within the Moët & Chandon constructing in Épernay, a city within the Champagne area. What makes this champagne home so particular? It preserves the foundational legacy of recent champagne-making immediately. It is taken into account the birthplace of champagne.

It’s essential to notice that Épernay isn’t a big metropolis surrounded by many different smaller cities. In reality, there are about 20 totally different municipalities inside 10 minutes of driving from Dom Pérignon’s location. The location is very strategic as these adjoining areas are the place Dom Pérignon curates solely the perfect grapes from grand cru vineyards in these municipalities.

So, should you’re planning on visiting this iconic vacation spot ensure you know the place it’s situated earlier than you go as a result of in any other case, it could possibly be difficult for anybody else who isn’t aware of the realm. And I extremely suggest it, as a result of this nook of France is about as attractive because it will get.

See Related: Best & Most Beautiful Cities in Europe to Visit

How to get to the Dom Pérignon Champagne House

Champagne Mobillion Vineyards
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

To get to Dom Pérignon in Épernay, the best method is to drive from Paris or Charles de Gaulle Airport. Ultimately, the easiest way to get there may be by a non-public tour that features stops at many champagne homes. It makes for one of many best day trips from Paris you may presumably take, notably should you love fantastic wine.

Alternatively, you may also take a quick practice from Paris to Reims to go to champagne homes. Getting to Epernay by way of practice is a little more of a problem because it’s a smaller city than Reims and it might embody a switch or two.

For us, that’s what we precisely did. We had been doing a full Champagne region tour so we began in Reims after which ended up in Epernay from there.

The trip from Paris is about an hour in visitors, and the drive from Charles de Gaulle Airport is about 2 hours. The Dom Pérignon is within the heart of Epernay alongside the historic Avenue de Champagne, so your driver should not have any downside discovering it.

Can you go to Dom Pérignon cellars?

Hot Air Balloon Above Moet and Chandon in Epernay, France
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

The Dom Pérignon isn’t open to the general public however is out there for excursions by a private tour. This is your alternative to see the place a few of the greatest champagne on this planet will get made. You’ll learn the way Pinot noir and Chardonnay turned one of many world’s most well-known Champagnes.

The tour can even present how they age their wine and the place it’s saved earlier than being bottled. The cellar is spectacular with its vaulted ceiling and funky temperature-controlled rooms. It has a novel, virtually hallowed ambiance as you stroll by them.

Snagging that non-public tour generally is a little tough. Worry not although, as you may nonetheless go to different outstanding cellars within the area.

As effectively as different cellars you may go to in Épernay, there are different cellars in close by Reims open for excursions round city, just like the well-known Veuve Clicquot cellar. So should you didn’t get tickets to the Dom Pérignon expertise, it’s not the tip of the world – nor the glass.

See Related: Most Beautiful Villages in France to Visit

Dom Pérignon Tour

Bottles of Dom Perignon Aging in the Cave
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

As a fan of champagne, I used to be wanting to be taught extra concerning the historical past and course of behind Dom Pérignon. The of us at Dom Pérignon had been nice to talk with and had been sort sufficient to simply accept me on a non-public tour, so now I’m one step nearer to dying comfortable.

The tour begins on the important customer heart of Moët & Chandon. You can watch a brief video about how Dom Pérignon conjures up and its impression on French historical past.

From there, your information will take you on a strolling tour by their cellars—a surreal expertise the place you may go to Napolean’s cellar, the devoted locker for the cellar grasp, and be taught extra concerning the historical past of the unimaginable curation of this fantastic wine. The cellar contains bottles upon bottles of ageing champagne. It’s staggering.

You’ll additionally get an opportunity to be taught concerning the manufacturing course of, together with how vintages are curated, the bottle ageing course of, and the way their method to including sugar makes this such a novel type of wine.

At the tip of the strolling tour, you’ll finish your go to to the backyard courtyard for the perfect half…the wine tasting! You’ll get an opportunity to benefit from the magnificence, ripeness, and freshness of among the finest wines on Earth. Here are further photographs of our expertise on the tour and what the tour included.

Intro within the Lobby

In the primary a part of the tour, you’ll get a short historical past tour of the Moët & Chandon constructing in addition to what’s about to come back on the tour. You’ll get an summary of what makes this area so really particular by wanting on the map of grand cru vineyards that they supply their grapes from. See the under picture for the map.

Grape Sourcing Map at Moet & Chandon, Epernay
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

I additionally loved this appointment to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II crest to the Purveyors of Champagne, Moët & Chandon. You can discover these crests labeled on loads of British merchandise that the late, nice Elizabeth II deemed to be match for a queen. This is the primary and just one that I’ve seen as a sculpture – which I’m assuming means she REALLY loved a superb drop of Moët & Chandon! RIP, your Maj.

Queen Elizabeth's Appointment of Dom Perignon
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTraveler

From right here you’ll begin the tour by coming into the cave and cellars the place extra historical past and wine training unfolds.

See Related: Fun & Best Things to Do in Reims, France

Entering the Cellars and Cave

Stained Glass Entrance to the Dom Perignon Cave
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

When you consider phrases like “cave” and cellar, you’d be forgiven for picturing cobwebs, dusty barrels, and a sure dinginess. Well, there’s a little bit of that when you get downstairs, however it’s not with out a first rate quantity of fanfare. I completely cherished this wonderful and utterly surprising stained glass earlier than coming into the historic cellar and cave. Worthy of a cathedral, it’s a pleasant reminder of Dom Pérignon’s historical past.

Walking Tour of the Champagne Cave

Dom Perignon Wood Barrel in the Cellar
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers
Dusty Bottles of Dom Perignon
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers
Dom Perignon Wine Cave
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

I initially couldn’t resolve whether or not or not the cave jogged my memory of one thing out of Game of Thrones or an outdated conflict film, however that voice was quickly stifled simply by the sheer spectacle of hundreds of dusty bottles of champagne, lined up in row after row of cabinets. As effectively as being barely chilly, the air hums with a tangible sense of one thing really particular taking place down right here.

Napoleon’s Love for Dom Pérignon (And Champagne in General)

Sign for Napoleon the Great at Dom Perignon Cave
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

Believe it or not, Napoleon Bonaparte met Claude Moët throughout navy college and have become shut private associates ever since. Napoleon had his personal storage cellar right here at Moët & Chandon, which you will notice through the tour of the cellar together with an indication of dedication.

Napoleon wasn’t only a huge fan of Moët & Chandon and Dom Pérignon, he merely cherished champagne typically. It was at all times carried with him and his military throughout battle. He, his generals, and his employees would drink champagne after victory to have a good time.

But most significantly, do you know that Napoleon was allegedly the primary particular person to open a bottle of champagne with a saber? This continues to be executed frequently in eating places, simply with a tad bit smaller of a knife, however some European armies with cavalry regiments (historically Hussars) nonetheless benefit from the observe with a full-length saber…from horseback!

See Related: Champagne Region Travel Guide

Military History of the Cave

World War I Etchings on the Wall at Dom Perignon
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

Another navy gem that I discovered through the tour, is that the cellar was used throughout World War I for canopy throughout artillery bombardments and air raids and for these needing to hunt shelter. There are nonetheless etchings on the cave partitions, which sparked a critical drop in my abdomen because it made the conflict really feel ever so actual and current at that second.

Champagne Tasting within the Garden

Garden at Moët & Chandon Champagne House
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

It’s the perfect second of any tasting or winery tour on the market…the time to style what you’ve discovered. The tour finishes off on the stunning backyard the place you get an opportunity to get pleasure from some Dom Pérignon.

For our tasting as a gaggle of 4 folks, we completed a standard bottle of Dom Pérignon champagne and a bottle of Dom Pérignon rosé champagne. It wasn’t a lot tasting, because it was ingesting a considerable quantity of wine. No regrets about that!

This wine tour is a one-of-a-kind expertise that has been designed to offer a novel look into the world of Dom Pierre Pérignon, champagne, luxurious, and the fervour for excellence of curating wonderful wine, and it does simply that.

This is a good way to find out about every step in champagne manufacturing, and get an unique take a look at the historical past of the model’s iconic bottle design, the way it got here to be, and what makes these bottles so particular. I can’t suggest it sufficient.

See Related: Best Wine Tours Near Paris

BONUS: Other Wine Tours Of The Champagne Region

Perrier-Jouët Champagne House in Epernay
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

There are different alternatives to pattern Dom Pérignon and a few of the space’s different fantastic wines that are effectively value your time. Here is a pair which may spark some curiosity:

Dom Pérignon Cellar & Tasting Tour

Entrance Sign at the Moet & Chandon Champagne House, Epernay
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

This Dom Pérignon Cellar & Tasting Tour is an unforgettable expertise for any champagne lover. This tour takes you thru the Dom Pérignon property in Hautvillers, France. It is the place the legendary champagne was created over 300 years in the past.

You’ll go to the abbey ruins and be taught concerning the historical past and manufacturing of Dom Pérignon. You can style a number of grapes harvested and became totally different wines. The tour additionally contains visits to close by Reims and its vineyards, to style a pattern of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay Cuvée varieties.

As a particular deal with, you’ll have the possibility to strive restricted version bottles of Lady Gaga’s personal model of Dom Pérignon Rosé. Whether you’re a connoisseur or beginning to discover the fascinating world of wine, at the present time tour is sure to be a visit of a lifetime.

See Related: Things to Do in Chablis

Sightseeing of Avenue de Champagne in Épernay

Michel Gonet Champagne House, Epernay
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

Avenue de Champagne in Épernay is a must-see on any tour of the Champagne region. As the capital of champagne, Épernay is dwelling to many well-known champagne homes. Not solely does it characteristic the well-known Moët & Chandon, however there may be the proper mix of different iconic champagne homes and boutiques resembling Perrier-Jouët, Michel Gonet, Mercier, and so many others. It’s the Mecca of champagne.

The Avenue de Champagne (or Champagne Avenue) stretches over 1.2 miles, lined with grand mansions and champagne homes which can be a whole bunch of years outdated. Sightseeing on this space is an absolute should together with scheduling different excursions of the cellars or just sampling wine of their tasting rooms. Or they’ll admire the structure from the skin.

Some of those mansions are became museums that showcase champagne-making. If you’re in search of a novel expertise, Avenue de Champagne is likely one of the best places to visit in France for sightseeing.

A Bucket-List Worthy Experience

Front of Moet and Chandon in Epernay, France
Kyle Kroeger / By way ofTravelers

The Dom Pérignon tour is a one-of-a-kind expertise that has been designed to offer a novel look into the world of Dom Pierre Pérignon, champagne, and luxurious. The tour contains an unique take a look at the historical past of the model’s iconic bottle design and the way it got here to be. And you’ll find out about every step in champagne manufacturing.

After that, you’ll head out on foot along with your group and style 4 various kinds of glowing wine, and also you’ll be taught extra about what makes these bottles so particular. If you’re debating between this tour and one of many many different tours of the Champagne region, we extremely suggest taking the leap and reserving your spot to tour the perfect of the perfect.


What is the perfect classic champagne?

There’s no such factor as the perfect classic champagne as a result of every bottle of Dom Pérignon contains grapes from a single 12 months, highlighting the classic distinct qualities. Dom Pérignon doesn’t make non-vintage wines, preferring to prioritize high quality above amount.

Why is Dom Pérignon so costly?

Dom Pérignon vintages are matured for not less than seven years and use the perfect grapes from grand cru vineyards within the Champagne area of France.

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