Apart from fantastic motor cars and more fantastic motor cars at incredible venues, what do Salon Privé held this month at Blenheim Palace in England, the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este on Lake Como in Italy rescheduled from May for the first weekend in October, and the Sydney Harbour Concours d’Elegance held at “perhaps the grandest house remaining in Sydney”, Swifts in Darling Point, have in common?
Well, apart from the amazing automobiles in wonderful settings, and apart from glamour, luxury, style, and elegance, the answer is of course “Champagne”. After all which other beverage could do that list of superlatives justice? But not just any old champers or bubbly, but the Champagne of joyful lightness, Champagne Pommery.
Pommery, the official champagne of choice of all three Concours, is an artistic combination of eye, nose, and palate, and it was Madame Pommery who laid the foundations of the House in the late 1850s, following the death of her husband Alexandre-Louis. She established the brand, opened-up international markets, and was credited with creating the brut – or dry – style of champagne we drink today. Previously, Champagne had been a sweetish wine, loaded with sugar and alcohol. It was she who was also responsible for transforming the crayères – the Gallo-Roman chalk quarries – into cellars, 18 kilometres of interconnected barrel-vaulted galleries, 30 metres below ground, which today hold on average 20 million bottles! That should be enough to keep all three Concours going for a while!