A Preview to Champagne’s Unexpected Pleasures with the French #Winophiles

late night cranking in Champagne 

When the #Winophiles sought subjects for 2020 prompts, Sue suggested we do “unexpected pleasures” in Champagne.

Wine Predators Gwendolyn Alley and Sue Hill take a selfie in Reims outside the Cathedral.

Because when we were there in advance of competing in the World Wine tasting Championships, we of course expected

  • sparkling wine,
  • stunning food
  • site-seeing.

But we discovered so much more as you’ll see soon!

Got jet lag? Reims has hammocks!

While traveling right now has its restrictions, you CAN virtually wine, dine, and visit vineyards with us!

Phillipe Lancelot welcomed us. Check out his wines here.

Read the invite post here. In the following 10 French Winophiles articles this month, we discover and share our unexpected pleasures in and about Champagne!

Please join our twitter chat on Saturday 6/20/20 by following the hashtag #Winophiles.  We’ll be live at 8am Pacific time!

  • From Martin: “Champagne Drappier’s Blanc de Quatre Blancs; A Taste of Champagne’s White Heirloom Grape Varieties” www.enofylzwineblog.com aka @martindredmond
  • From Cam: “Pour un Pique-Nique Sur le Patio: Roasted Citrus Tart + Jacquart Brut Mosaique” on Culinary Adventures with Camilla  https://culinary-adventures-with-cam.blogspot.com/  aka @Culinary_Cam
  • From Cindy: “A Stroke of Serendipity – Discovering Champagne Louis Brochet Brut 1er Cru in London” aka @GrapeExp_Cindy on grape-experiences.com
  • From Nicole: “A Super Fancy Pants Grilled Cheese Pairing: Salmon Caviar Croque-Monsieur with Charles Dufour Bulles de Comptoir 6 La Benjamine 2.0 Champagne” on SommsTable.com
  • From Robin: “Champagne & BBQ, Chartogne-Taillet meets Rollin’ Smoke” aka @CrushGrapeChron at https://www.crushedgrapechronicles.com/
  • From Terry: “Champagne and Sticky Asian Chicken Thighs: Whoa!” on Our Good Life Www.terristeffes.com
  • From Jeff: “The Polar Opposite of House Style at Champagne Coessens” on “Food Wine Click!” https://foodwineclick.com/  aka @Foodwineclick
  • From Katrina: “Seven is a Charm with Laherte Freres Les 7 Champagne” on https://thecorkscrewconcierge.com/ aka @corksconcierge
  • From Susannah: “Falling In Love with Champagne: My First Visit to a Wine region” on avvinare
  • From Sue and I: “Two Days of Unexpected Pleasures in Champagne: Day One” and “Day Two” on winepredator.com aka @artpredator

Sue Hill tasting the Champagne of Philippe Lancelot in his vineyards: organic since 2010, biodynamic since 2012. 

Discussion questions for the twitter chat: 


11:00 a.m. EST

Welcome to the French #Winophiles chat on “Unexpected Pleasures in Champagne.” Today we’ll share our discoveries: travel tips, biodynamic wines, red wines, unusual pairings, and more! Please introduce yourself, tell us where you tweet from, and share a link to your blog if applicable.

11:05 a.m. EST

Q1 On 1/19/19 #Winophiles learned about #biodynamic wine in France, and today 6/20/20 we share unexpected pleasures in #Champagne, including sustainable viticulture, pairings, travel tips, and still wines. Is this new for you? If not, please share a link!

11:10 a.m. EST

Q2. In addition to sparkling wine, the #Champagne region produces still red and white wines. Did you know this? Did you choose a still wine for your unexpected pleasure from #Champagne? Tell us more! Link? #Winophiles

11:15 a.m. EST

Q3 The Champagne region is most famous for its bubbles! Did you choose a sparkling wine for your unexpected pleasure from #Champagne? Please tell us about it! Link? #Winophiles

11:20 a.m. EST

Q4 People say wine is made in the vineyard. Unfortunately, because of pesticides, #Champagne has some of the most polluted soils and water in the world. What did you learn about viticultural practices in #Champagne this month? #Winophiles

11:25 a.m. EST

Q5 Have you visited #Champagne? Have you written about your travels there? Link? What was an unexpected pleasure from your visit? Photos please! #Winophiles

11:30 a.m. EST

Q6 When we compare and contrast organic with biodynamic wines, some say #organic is what you can’t do while #biodynamic is what you must do. Is your wine certified? Is it important to you to drink organic or biodynamic wine or wines made by grower makers or small producers?  #Winophiles

11:35 a.m. EST

Q7 Considering the special circumstances of life during the #COVID19 pandemic, did you find it difficult or easy to locate your wine and/or to discover an unexpected pleasure for this month’s  #Winophilestheme?

11:40 a.m. EST

Q8 Sparkling wines are made all over France, and in the world, but ONLY sparkling wine made in the traditional method in #Champagne can be called #Champagne. Tell us about an unexpected #Champagne sparkling wine pleasure from this month or previously. Link? #Winophiles

11:45 a.m. EST

Q9 Did you taste more than one wine for this month’s #Winophiles? Tell us about another wine or style! Or pose a question for discussion!

11:50 a.m. EST

Q10 We’re all about the cuisine here on the French #winophiles! Is food part of your unexpected pleasure of #Champagne? Tell us more! Photos? Link? Recipes?

11:55 a.m. EST

Thanks for joining the Unexpected Pleasures of Champage #winophiles twitter chat! Shout out to participating bloggers @always_ravenous @foodwineclick @CrushGrapeChron @savortheharvest @sommstable  @martindredmond @Culinary_Cam @GrapeExp_Cindy  @corksconcierge

12:00 p.m. EST

We hope you enjoyed this month’s chat on Expected Pleasures in #Champagne with host @artpredator. See you next month on the third Saturday: in July the French #Winophiles discuss white wines of Rousillon with host @savortheharvest


The view from one of Philippe Lancelot’s biodynamic vineyards in Champagne. Famous people you’ve heard of get married in that structure at the top of the hill.


Please Comment! I'd love to hear from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s