A Weekend in Champagne

On Saturday morning I hopped on a train at Gare de Paris-Est headed towards Reims in the Champagne-Ardenne region, as one of my besties, Megan, has just moved over there to do a stage with the Champagne house Taittinger.

The Cathedral in Reims

Getting the train was such a pleasant experience, it only took 45 minutes on the way there. On the way back it took just over 2 hours as I didn't take the speedy train, but I had lots of magazines and my iPod so all was good there. My return journey consisted of two trains, both really nice, however the second one looked like it was straight out of Soviet Russia and was scarily busy. However, the guard saw me looking for a seat and ushered me straight into first class which was pretty swanky!

The journey to Reims did require a strong coffee, as I may or may not have pulled an all nighter just before, getting home at 7am only to leave my flat at just after half 9 in the morning...

Sunrise over the Seine

It was with good reason though as the night before we went to our favourite club, Wanderlust, where I managed to get us into the DJ tent which was pretty surreal and just as we were about to leave we found ourselves talking to the creative director of the nightclub.

Gare de Paris Est

I got into Reims at just after 11 o'clock on Saturday morning and it is STUNNING. I genuinely felt like I was on holiday, it was so picturesque. After lots of photo taking I wandered over to Taittinger to meet Meg. I had a slight panic as Apple Maps was telling me it would take 1 hour 43 minutes to walk there, so I quickly found some wifi to download Google Maps, only to find it was an 18 minute walk. Woops.

We spent last night at the cafe/bar in the photo above, which was really good fun. It was particularly hilarious when a 16 year old garçon, the cousin of a friend of a friend of Meg's (confusing, I know), who was completely trashed tried to speak English with us. He then got out his ID to prove how young he was, only for it to have a picture of him when he was about 5 years old on it so it genuinely could have been anyone's. It had us in stitches all the same, especially when we found out his family owns a prestigious champagne company over here, but then again everyone I met in Reims seemed to have some kind of connection with the champagne world.

The Cathedral's light show

Today I headed over to Taittinger with Meg's friend who was such a great guy (although I don't know how to spell his name, awkward!) and I got to have a free tour of the estate with a complimentary glass of Champagne which was pretty impressive

€8 million worth of Champagne 

So proud of my pal!

Just before my train home Meg's friend took me to another Champagne house and treated me to a tasting session which was very kind of him, even if it did mean getting on my train a little bit tipsy. I've definitely found a new love for champagne and I will not be mixing it with orange juice ever again (sacrilege!)

The next few photos are of where Meg lives, which is the "servants quarters" of the house next door. It's such an amazing house, even if it did give me the creeps slightly at night time! I would however just like to point out all the empty bottles and boxes of Champagne in her kitchen, someone has clearly moved on from predrinking on the cheapest beer in Sainsbury's..?

The view from Meg's bedroom

I had such a great time on my mini break away from Paris, however I'd just like to put out a special mention to Harry (as I know he has been expecting one for a while now) who has been a great pal to me in my first few months here, but is now leaving to go and live the high life in Hong Kong and he will be very much missed! :(

Spending my last afternoon with Harry in the Jardins de Luxembourg in the 5th

A la prochain!



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