The Art and Business of Champagne


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About the Book

When people raise their glasses in celebratory toasts, few are aware of all the work behind the fizz. Here is a book to open their eyes with an inside look—from the vineyard to the marketplace—at the world of champagne.

Just like good wine, the book begins with the grapes: variety, growing season, harvesting and pressing method. While not attempting to be the definitive work on champagne making, this volume does enumerate all the steps and decisions that go into producing a quality champagne. Blending, bottling, aging, fermenting and storage are also discussed. With a view to practicality, the author—himself a champagne manufacturer—looks at the marketing and business concerns of champagne, including the necessity of balancing quality and timely production. Since, by definition, champagne comes only from Champagne, France, a brief history of and visitor’s guide to this region is also included. The final chapters look at vintages from 1900 to 2003 as well as the various families who make it their business to produce some of the world’s finest wines.

About the Author(s)

The late Dan Ginsburg lived in Washington, D.C., but was a part-time resident of Ay, France. He was the president and majority owner of Champagne de Meric, the only American-owned winery in Champagne.

Bibliographic Details

by Dan Ginsberg

Format: softcover (6×9)
Pages: 242
Bibliographic Info: photos, tables, appendices, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2006
pISBN: 978-0-7864-2225-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-0821-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface 1
Introduction: Champagne Basics 5

Part I. Lessons of an American in Champagne
1. Choose Your Teachers Well 13
2. It’s All in the Grapes 19
3. Respect Tradition 38
4. Patience Is a Virtue 56
5. The Business of Champagne Is Business 63
6. The World Won’t Beat a Path to Your Door Just Because You Make a Better Champagne 70
7. Use the Home Field Advantage 76
8. How to Make a Small Fortune in the Champagne Business 86

Part II. The World of Champagne
9. The History of Champagne 93
10. Past Harvests in Champagne 103
11. Key Village Profiles 128
12. If You Run Out of Champagne De Meric 148
13. A Visitor’s Guide to the Champagne Region 190
14. Life in Champagne 198
15. The Future 205

Appendix I. Champagne Surface Planted by Department by Grape Variety 211
Appendix II. Eight Ways to Maximize Your Enjoyment of Champagne 212
Appendix III. Sample Letters to Champagne Producers 221
Appendix IV. Contact Information for Hotels, Restaurants, and Tourist Destinations 223
Bibliography 227
Index 229

Ebook Availability

McFarland (Hummingbird Digital Media edition)

Amazon (Kindle)

Apple (iBooks)

Barnes & Noble (Nook)


Google Play