Look at that silly smile. That is me scanning the room for my next glass of bubbly at Grand Champagne 2018 – one of the best wine events in the whole of Europe. One would not guess Helsinki to be the venue for such an event. Maybe Paris or London sounds more natural. But it is the hard work of Master of Wine Essi Avellan and winelovers Taru and Christian From, that bring the cream of Champagne to Helsinki every spring for this three day celebration of wine. For the past two years, I have had the privilege to attend the Grand Champagne press event, listening to visiting winemakers speak about their profession and taste through the years new releases of cuvees and vintages. Here is my report of what is new and hot, and what I recommend to buy into the cellar. Continue reading “The Grand Champagne Report”
I am super excited: 50 producers, 200 different champagnes and 16 different master classes organized by famous champagne personalities, cellar masters and head-winemaker – all under one roof in Finland in may. Grand Champagne is by far the biggest bubbly event of the year in the Nordic countries (as far as you ask me), and its happening in my birth town of Helsinki where we visit frequently. And the best news is, that this year we are going! Continue reading “Take me to Grand Champagne”
The last day of the year, and I am browsing pictures from 2016. I guess this is a typical post for a lazy blogger, reading old posts and thinking of which stories are worth revisiting. Looking back, it seems like a lifetime since these moments were the present: visiting Champagne, enjoying the views over Valtellina valley and all those lovely dinners in Stockholm. Life starts sprinting when you turn 30 (now I’m already 34), and there doesn’t seem to be any way to slow it down. I guess it is that you really start knowing yourself and what you like after a certain age, so better just buckle up and enjoy the ride. Continue reading “Goodbye 2016”
I very recently opened one of the oldest bottles of wine that I have ever owned. It is quite funny, the bottle was old, but I had owned it for less than two weeks before popping the cork. This was not my sideways-moment, but a result of some practical thinking. The Bollinger Grande Anné 1982 was ready to drink now, and we wanted to take advantage of the little flu-free time we had left. Later on I realized, that I had no idea on what kind of a year -82 was. It was the year Michael Jackson released his Thriller album (one of the favorite albums of my childhood), Grace Kelley died and all 9 planets aligned on the same side of the Sun. But how was the year in Champagne? Continue reading “A Trip Back to 1982”
Ok, so an absolutely crazy week behind me. Where to even start? It all began with a phone call when I was about to board a flight from Stockholm to Vilnius.. Continue reading “Wineweek 98: Vilnius on my Mind”
This has been a week of birthday celebrations. To be honest my birthday was already last week. However, due to my friend getting married on my big B-day, we postponed that celebration until later. I really like my birthdays. It is that one day of the year that is just about me. Sounds a bit selfish, but on my birthday I get to wish for what ever I want. And this year, I wanted to go back to where M took me for my 30th birthday, restaurant Gastrologik in Stockholm.
Continue reading “Wineweek 97: Born in 1982”
It is already a week since we boarded a train back to Paris from Champagne. Time goes by fast, as these photos make me feel like they were taken yesterday. Ok, so a week is not that long of a time, but it still feels almost unfair how short days have become. I still remember a time when minutes felt like hours and hours like days. I feel lucky to have taken a lot of photos to remember these precious moments by. Continue reading “Wineweek 83: Memories from Epernay”
I have been aching to write about my visit to Bollinger since I closed the heavy iron gates behind me. The visit to the legendary champagne house was by far the best of the whole trip to Champagne. Bollinger is not easy to gain access to (not as hard as Krug though), but we were able to book a special tour through the Swedish importer. Continue reading “The Secrets of Bollinger”
It is Sunday and our time in Champagne has come to an end. I am currently sitting on one of the only trains going from Reims to Paris today. The strikes are hitting the rail road hard, but we were lucky enough to secure seats. Soon we will see how the capital of France is coping with the upcoming events and a flooding Seine. I must say I was a bit worried before the trip about all the fuss, but being here everything has just fallen in place. And of course, bad weather and transport issues meant significantly less tourists. Continue reading “Wineweek 82: A Postcard From Champagne”
This morning we are embarking on a trip. A trip that I have been waiting for a long time. We are traveling to Paris, and then to the heart of Champagne, Epernay. Oh, how I have been waiting for this trip! I have been to Champagne only once, and that was a more official visit to the Terres & Vins champagne exhibition. We arrived to Reims on a Sunday, so most of the places we wanted to visit were closed. We were only able to visit one winery, G.H. Mumm. This time around though, we will be visiting masses of Champagne houses. Our trip is however shadowed by ongoing strikes in France as well as the high security associated to the Football European Championships. Not to mention that they weatherman has forecasted rain for the duration of our whole trip. We have been on alert all weekend, in case we needed to cancel everything. It is a bit difficult to move around in the countryside if there is a shortage of fuel (we are planning to use taxies). We are also intending to take the high speed train back to Paris on Sunday.