I had a great day out of the Big Smoke, last week, down to Kent, to go freeze my nuts off and do some digging in the dirt. Doesn’t sound all that appealing does it? Well how about if I clarify it a bit, as we were planting vines for the first Champagne Grand Marque to officially land on our shores. Domaine Evremond, a new venture for Champagne Taittinger, is now the proud owner of row after (slightly wonky) row of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier, as the quest for increasingly swanky and gorgeous English bubbles hots up.
The Smart Move
You might notice I said “officially land on our shores”. It’s been a fairly open secret that a number of Champagne houses have been buying plots of land all over the south coast of England, as climate change eventually turns our southern shores more like Champagne than…well…Champagne (or at least old school Champagne anyway). But for Taittinger to come out and be the first to say “yup, this is what we’re doing and it’s going to be great” is both brave and business savvy at the same time.
So Who or What Is Evremond?
Domaine Evremond is named after the Marquis de St Evremond, who went down in history as the French noble-in-exile that introduced the English court of Charles II to Champagne in the 1660s. The English love affair with those plush bubbles has remained strong ever since. I mean, what a great name to go for!! Someone in the marketing department deserves a little bonus for that surely?!
So When Can We Have A Try?
Well, I’m afraid we’ll have to hold our horses a bit there. The little saplings we popped in the ground last week at the press event will take a couple of years to fruit. So first harvest not expected until 2020, with 3 years of bottle ageing to follow. So I guess we just hold out for the invitation to the big party in 2023/2024. Taittinger will not be doing this to mess about, we can really look forward to this one!
The “Digging Evremond” Event is a feature on BBC One’s The One Show tonight at 7pm. All else fails, hit it up on iPlayer!