06 March, 2015

Æg og bobler

 
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Jeg har set de første billeder.

Det er sikkert stadig svinedyrt, men altså atter stenbidertid i Danmark.

Æg og bobler er et herligt makkerskab. Til weekend og hverdag. Jeg siger det bare.

God fredag.

04 March, 2015

Sweet rosés


We are in the process of tasting the vin clairs, the still wines, of last years grapeharvest.

An opportunity were several palates are gathered thus an occasion to check other parameters as well.

So we tried the assembled rosé champagne with three different dosages: The current one, a less sweet and a sweeter one.

Just for the fun.

At the moment less sweetened champagnes are fashion. The customers ask for them. The funny thing is however, when the less sweet or even not sweetened at all champagnes are tasted blindly, most people prefer some sugar after all. When they don't know what they drink, that is.

Around this table the tasting confirms what we already know. The majority of ten winegrowers from Vertus and some neighbourhood villages like our own prefer less sugar.

At the moment the Rosé d'Assemblage is at a dosage of 6,5 grammes of sugar/liter which is low. After all a brut usually begins at 7 g/l. This group however would prefer even less: Just 5 g/l is the preferred taste. Only a small minority goes for 8 g/l.

However, the dosage varies with the years. As it should since the vintages vary themselves.

03 March, 2015

Holidays and vineyards


Here in Champagne kids have traditionally learned to deal with vineyards from their parents.

Nowadays however, kids in the vineyards are a rare sight. After all they are in school most of the time most days. Fair enough, there is much to learn.

Shared lives
However, we strongly believe that it is good for kids to see what we do, and good for families to share daily life and work when this is possible.

This means that I will come to school whenever they ask for parents to accompany.

And also, that the kids will come with us in the vineyards when it is holidays and sometimes weekends.

This is how we all learn about each others life, when we share we understand a bit more.

Collect the wood
To collect the wood from the pruned plants is a grand old task of kids here in Champagne. This I learnt from one of our former neighbours, who must be close to 70 years these days and who trained herself with her father many years ago in what seems another life.

I am quite happy to see my kids follow this path. Even it is just a holiday thing

28 February, 2015

Good Food


Each year rural France visits Paris.

At the Salon d'Agriculture you can taste all sorts of good food and drinks, see animals from all over France and - if you time your visit well - you can see people exercise their jobs with animals, preparing the goodies of the show or cook good food with them.

Have a great weekend.

25 February, 2015

Champagne er lidt mere ude end hjemme


For nogle uger siden fik vi de foreløbige tal for salget af flasker i 2014 her i Champagne. Måske husker du stadig, at det så fint ud. Måske også, at den slags faktisk har en direkte betydning for, hvor mange flasker vi får lov at lave senere på året.

Det er et organ, der hedder CIVC - Comité Champagne - der som en af sine opgaver holder øje med salg og eksport, som fortæller, at 2015 meget vel kan blive året, hvor eksporten af champagne overhaler forbruget her i Frankrig.

Det er også interessant. Hvis du skulle du være i tvivl.

Lidt champagnehistorie
Historisk set har champagnen først og fremmest været en eksportvare. Helt tilbage i det 18. århundrede blev der skippet champagne fra regionen her og til fjerne egne som zarens Rusland, Frederiks den Stores Preussen og såmænd da også til Kongens København i den florissante tid.

Det var først i det 20. århundrede, at tingene ændrede sig.

Den Første Verdenskrig og måske især børskrakket i 1929 fulgt af den store depression ødelagde markedet for champagneproducenterne, der især solgt meget til Rusland og til USA.

Det sluttede brat, og champagneproducenterne måtte kigge sig om efter nye kunder.

Fra eksport- til hjemmemarked
I denne periode skiftede markedet fra at være eksportorienteret til et stort fransk hjemmemarked, der jo altså først skulle opdyrkes.

Langsomt genopstod champagnen fra at have været en eksportvare til primært at blive solgt hjemme. Da jeg kom til Champagne i nullerne, tegnede det franske hjemmemarked sig stadig for et godt stykke over de 60% af samtlige flasker.

Siden har en stor del af verden klaret sig igennem endnu en meget alvorlig krise. I Frankrig ser den ud til at have bidt sig fast, og de få tegn på at det kan slutte er stadig meget spæde. I mange, franske hjem er hverken stemningen eller pengepungen nødvendigvis åben for de store champagnefejringer.

Derfor er eksportmarkedet nu lige ved at overhale hjemmemarkedet igen. I givet fald for første gang i tæt på 100 år.

Champagne Tange-Gérard er i aktion på den indre københavnske del af eksportmarkedet foroven.

23 February, 2015

Travellor's cries to stay on track


The vineyards can be a very peaceful place.

They can be noisy as well.

Like each spring when these travellers pass through the lands of Champagne on their way north.

They call out for each other to stay in line and on track and it is these cries we hear deep under. Very similar to the noise of the geese in the village.


Another reminder for us that spring is on its way. Another brief glance into the fascinating habits of nature. These birds travel thousands of kilometers between the place where they breed and the place they spend winter and they do it twice per year.

One of their big stops - a bit like Alsace for Danish campers heading to Southern France in the summer - is the Lac de Der in Southern Champagne. People go there to watch birds. The lake is a big artificial reservoir of water, it collects water from the river Marne to avoid floodings. Now the Lac de Der is a pleasure lake with all sorts of sports linked with water, and also a big place to watch birds.

It's amazing that these birds, genetically programmed to certain already amazing behaviours, apparantly are able to change location when something better shows up. Since the lake was created in the 1980'es it has developped into a big place to observe and count the birds. Ten thousands of these birds spend winter at the Lac rather than move further south as other of their kin.

This group is on the way up north. Maybe, at some stage they will rest in Utterslev Mose in Copenhagen, another big spot for geese otherwise on their wings.

Maybe they'll choose to hang around a while as they learn about the recent snow in Denmark?

We'll recognice their squawking anytime.



22 February, 2015

It's all about Oscars

So time is up for the Oscar's once again. In a few hours Paris time anyway.

Showtime. Nice dresses. Ugly dresses. Moviestars, starlettes.

And champagne.

Piper is up
This year Piper-Heidsieck is up if you're in.

"There is nothing more grand than receiveing a coveted Oscar", says CEO Cécile Bonnefond.

"It is therefore very natural for Piper-Heidsieck to be serving its champagnes at the Oscar's ceremony".

We could have said the same thing about Tange-Gérard. But I'm not sure we could supply enough bottles, so we did not even try to run for the honour this year.

More movies
As for the movies, I would like to go much more often.

I really like to sit in the red seat, talk quietly with whoever is with me as we eye the trailers and then go silent as the light's are off. 100% Showtime.

"The Grand Budapest Hotel" is done, with delight. "Timbuktu" as well with mixed feelings but not about the beauty of the film. I am pretty sure we'll make it to see Whiplash as well.

What about yourselves? Which of the nominated movies did you enjoy?




21 February, 2015

Klagebrev


"Min kone og jeg har en lille” klage”….. du burde have fortalt os, at vi skulle købe flere flasker da vi besøgte jer. Vi er blevet rigtig gode til at lukke en flaske op og det tager snart slut med jeres fine dråber.

Vi er enige om, at vi bare må ned og hente flere forsyninger."


To enere og en toer
Ja tak, den slags klagebreve modtager vi gerne.

Vi er hjemme i påsken, jeg gør nogle kasser klar med det samme.

Som et lille plaster på såret kan vi tilbyde en lille én og endvidere en toer til passageren. Okay?







18 February, 2015

Tegn på forår lugter skidt


Det er ikke fordi vi gøder meget. Vinstokke skal ikke have det for godt. De yder bedst, når de skal kæmpe lidt for det.

Alligevel slipper vi ikke helt uden om en omgang NPK hvert år i udkanten af vinteren.

Ikke for det, her synes foråret nu i fuld gang. Fuglene har gennem flere uger taget fat i det tidlige forårs lydspor, og nogle dage kravler temperaturerne op i det tocifrede, og vi vender vores vinterblege ansigter mod lyset og varmen.

Piller med jern
Andre har forlængst gødet. Det er dem, der har en traktor, og som må tage frostdage til hjælp. Ellers er traktoren for tung.

Selv har vi måttet vente på forsyninger.

Ikke nok med at vi køber økologisk, i år indeholder pillerne også et ekstra skud jern, og det handler stadig om at undgå karens.

Selvsyn og måling
Vores ældste vinstokke er plantet først i 60'erne, de yngste i 80'erne, og vi har ingen planer om at genplante hele parceller.

Det kan godt betale sig at holde lidt øje med deres velbefindende. Blandt andet bladene sladrer om eventuelle mangler, men det er klart, at vi kigger også på planternes generelle vigør, og så tager vi jordprøver, som vi får analyseret på et laboratorium.

Gode øjne er en fin ting, men mere systematiske målinger er også et godt værktøj.

Træt ved fyraften
I sidste uge kom gødningen så til huse, og Alain har brugt nogle dage på at få den knust og kværnet i vores rækker.

Alt i alt nogle tons piller, der skal hældes ned i den kværn, vi kan spænde på vores lille motordrevne hjælper.

Jeg skal hilse og sige, at nogen er ret lange i armene, når det er fyraften.