With Champagne spirits like Marc de Champagne, Fine de la Marne, and Chardonnay Vodka, we see the Champagne region getting right into hard liquor!
If you are an exclusive wine or champagne drinker (like me!) these full-strength spirits will knock your socks off and put hair on your chest.
After over a week in the region touring producers, I had heard so much about sending the rebeche to the distillery to make ratafia, Marc de Champagne, and Fine de la Marne I decided to actually visit a distillery in Aÿ. Jean Goyard is a family business that has been around for more than a century making Marc de Champagne and Fine de la Marne.
Marc de Champagne is produced from pressing the skin and seeds of the grape rather than the juice and it’s a powerful spirit (40% alcohol) that’s aged for several years in oak barrels. To use an analogy, Marc de Champagne is to France what Grappa is to Italy and Tsipouro to Greece.
Fine de la Marne is an eau-de-vie specific to Champagne, made by the traditional distillation of champagne wines. 40% ABV, the Fine de la Marne is aged for several years in oak barrels in the distillery warehouses on the banks of the Marne. For context, Fine de la Marne is to Champagne what Cognac is to Charente and Armagnac to Gascony.
The impressive thing about using the leftover must (for the ratafia) AND the skins and seeds (for the Marc de champagne) is that there is no wastage. Champagne makers are actually required by law to give the must and skins and seeds to the distilleries, but many make their own ratafia now too.
Slightly less traditional but a bit of fun nonetheless is Vodka made from Chardonnay grapes! A waste of chardonnay grapes if you ask me… I suspect they only use the grapes that aren’t good enough for champagne!
I tried them all – straight! – but I didn’t enjoy them… which is not necessarily a reflection on the drinks because I don’t drink spirits (not even in cocktails!) because I don’t like the taste and I end up VERY drunk VERY fast!
So who knew they made other boozy drinks in the Champagne appellation?
There are actually a few more you can check out here…
If you do visit Champagne, seek out some champagne Spirits like Marc de Champagne and Fine de la Marne for a bit of variety and don’t forget to tell me about it in comments below or post a pic and tag @bubbleandflute #bubbleandflute #happychampers on facebook and instagram.
Bubble & Flute promotes the responsible consumption of alcohol for individuals of legal drinking age in their country.