Champagne Houses in Epernay

Champagne - It's not just for celebrations


Epernay has some fantastic Champagne Houses, is in the center of Champagne, and the vast majority of its residents work in the Champagne trade. It also has the most Champagne houses, more than Reims, and is a short 70 minute train ride from Paris, closer than Reims.

We describe some house here that that are particularly fun and nice to visit.

However nothing compares to the Gallo-Roman cellars of Reims, based in 2000 years old chalk quarries. Epernay and Ay also have similar cellars, but they are much more modern. Also, Epernay just isn't a great place to stay; the city shuts down at night compared to Reims with its nightlife, restaurants, cafes, and more.

 You pretty much need a car if you are in Epernay or nearby for long. Don't be mislead by my rhetoric though, there are fantastic places to stay and eat in or at least near Epernay and if spending a week or more in Champagne, Epernay is high on the list of places to visit if not essential.  And no, a car is not 100% essential, and several of the houses are a short five or so minute walk from the train station.

Here are some of the houses to consider visiting while in or near Epernay.

* indicates houses a short walk from the train station.

* Champagne Achille Princier

9, rue Jean Chandon Moët
Cellars dating from 18th century and located in the town center with parking available. Tours in many languages including French, English, German, Dutch, Portuguese, Greek, Chinese and more. Disabled access.

* Champagne de Castellane

57, rue de Verdun.
A very informative tour in French, English or German, which really shows you how Champagne is made. You'll see workers corking, labeling, and more, There is an on site museum with a collection of old posters and labels which some people find boring and others fascinating. Make sure you climb the 237 steps up the tower for wonderful views of the area. The steps are short and if you are in reasonable shape it's easy.
Mid January to mid March they are only open for tastings, not cellar tours.

Champagne Charles de Cazanove

57, rue de Verdun
Their tour starts with a short into video, followed by a tour of the cellars, and finally a tasting of their wines.

Nicolas Feuillatte

Chouilly - CD 40 A
The largest Champagne co-op. It's easy to contact them online for tours. Instead of seeing vast underground cellars, you'll see the giant stainless steel blending vats and above ground temperature controlled storerooms with modern art from notable artists.

Alfred Gratien

30, rue Maurice Cerveaux
Open year round except weekends and holidays. A truly traditional producer who only uses oak barrels, something very few houses do anymore. You won't see stainless steel here, and everything is essentially done by hand. Small and intimate.

* Champagne Mercier
70, avenue de Champagne
Mercier is the most popular Champagne in France (not available in the USA) and this is the most popular cellar tour. After a short introductory film, you take the elevator down almost 100 feet and get on a laser guided train to tour the 18 kilometer long cellars. No appointment necessary as of this writing for French and English tours, except for large groups. Disabled access.

* Moet and Chandon
20, avenue de Champagne
Tours in many languages available with a choice of different tastings. Open 7 days a week from mid March to mid November. No disabled access.

* Perrier-Jouet

26 avenue de Champagne
Right next to Moet and Chandon. Also see Maison de Belle Epoque on the property for an extensive Art Nouveau/Art Deco collection. A great tour that shows you much of what other houses skip on their tours like the bottling factory and large vats of Champagne.

Pol Roger

3, rue Henri le Large

Open Monday to Fridays and very friendly but no tours. Check out the Winston Churchill statue (their Cuvee Winston Churchill is one of the best Champagnes made).

* indicates houses a short walk from the train station.

Remember that most Champagne Houses in Epernay and elsewhere require reservations for a visit and tour, and also that it is cold in the cellars so bring a jacket or sweater. Two or maybe three a day is the maximum anyone should attempt.