Monday, April 13, 2009

Summit Needed to Stimulate Slumping Sales in Le Champagne

There has been a dramatic decrease in sales of Champagne and calls for drastic cuts in yields may be required. Domestic sales for the first two months of 2009 were down 29.3% and European exports dropped a whopping 47.7%.
So perhaps what Le Champagne needs is a great Ambassador. And of course no one was better at it than Napoleon Bonaparte himself. The image portrayed here
is of Napoleon and his good friend Jean-Rémy Moët in July of 1807 at Moët et Chandon
click on pictures to get the enlarged versions for more detail
It was Napoleon who commented "That in Victory you deserve Champagne,in defeat you need it." A lot of Champagne was bought and consumed.
When we visited
Moët et Chandon
during the 2005 harvest season we were taken to the pleasant garden courtyard with the Three Emperors' Tree and taken back in time when Europe's great leaders met there to enjoy Champagne and of course talk about the issues of the day.

It was a thrilling moment enjoying our own glass of Champagne and stepping back in time to March of 1814.This was followed by a magnificent lunch in the
Moët's residence formal dining room. Our hospitable host, Arneaud de Mareuil, the Vice-President Public Relations, Communication & Heritage was a true champagne ambassador.
That is Sanjoy, my wine travel friend, on my left and Arneaud on my right. The rest of the guests were media and movie types from Denmark. I ended up calling them the Great Danes (That's a veterinarian's mind)
So is it time to move forward and have a Champagne Summit to discuss how best to support the Champagne industry? The picture on the right shows who might be meeting under that old Three Emperors Tree today.
Now the faces may not fit too well as I adapted them to the lunch scene, but you get the picture. That is Prime Minister Gordon Brown on the left, Germany's Chancellor Angela Merchel and of course Obama. On the right is President Nicholas Sarkozy. Somehow, I get the impression that he may not be the most popular guest. I think the question could be asked 'What have you done for us lately?' A toast to you all!!

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