First Time in France - Itinerary

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Frank Z
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First Time in France - Itinerary

#1 Post by Frank Z » December 2nd, 2019, 9:45 pm

Hi Everyone,

I'll be traveling to France for the first time after the New Year and I have been looking at all of the travel forums for recommendations on wineries to visit in Champagne and Burgundy (but mainly Champagne) and restaurants to eat at in Paris and beyond, etc., but I wanted to get some feedback on whether the following itinerary is feasible. I go to Napa Valley like 4 times every year (and on occasion Paso Robles and Santa Barbara), but I've never been out of the country and from what I have read, things are slightly different. When I'm in Napa, I stick to private appointments, usually 2-4 hours in length - is this what I should expect in France as well?

1/1-1/4 Paris (I still am going through the Paris restaurants thread)

1/5 Travel to Reims; not much is open on Sunday it seems

1/6 Vilmart (AM) and Piper-Hiedsieck (PM)

1/7 Rent car and drive to Epernay; Philipponnat (PM); Jean-Pierre Launois (PM)

1/8 Pierre Peters (AM); Drive to Dijon/Beaune

1/9 Visit a smaller producer in Burgundy (any suggestions? I don't have too much experience with Burgundy); Drive back to Avize; Selosse + dinner at Les Avizes (was told that I had to go here)

I really wanted to visit Les Crayeres, based off of the forum, but it seems to be closed during the time I'm there. Same with most of the large champagne houses (all LVMH properties). Ultimately, I just want to see if the spacing is okay for my trip, to make sure I have enough time to relax and enjoy the scenery and not just rush from appointment to appointment. Thanks!
Frank Zhang

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Mark Y
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#2 Post by Mark Y » December 2nd, 2019, 9:58 pm

Why the one day drive to beaune? Seems a waste of 6 hours on the road? Not gonna cover much in half a day plus u are driving after PP. and then next day have to beat the clock back to taste at selosse?
I’d skip beaune and just chill in Reims area
Y.e.

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Mikko R
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#3 Post by Mikko R » December 2nd, 2019, 10:08 pm

I do agree with Mark. Maybe you could travel to Troyes and have dinner in Aux crieurs de vin which is one of the best wine shops and restaurants in Champagne. it's simply amazing!

https://www.instagram.com/explore/locat ... rs-de-vin/
M i k k o R u u h o n e n

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Victor Hong
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#4 Post by Victor Hong » December 3rd, 2019, 5:13 am

Rent directly a Sixt car. Avoid EuropCar.
WineHunter.

dbailey
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#5 Post by dbailey » December 3rd, 2019, 9:27 am

If Crayeres is closed, try Assiette Champenois.
Dan

Mich@el Ch@ng
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#6 Post by Mich@el Ch@ng » December 3rd, 2019, 9:37 am

Clerget for burgundy?

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Francois Olivier
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#7 Post by Francois Olivier » December 3rd, 2019, 11:44 pm

Burgundy producers are mainly family business
They haven’t a marketing services.
Send an email or call before.
Otherwise you can find a winecellar, restaurant who are open sunday.

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Gus Siokis
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#8 Post by Gus Siokis » December 8th, 2019, 9:47 am

In Burgundy, I would stick with one of the big houses such as Drouhin, Bouchard or Jadot.....easier to get in and schedule.
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Andrew Kotowski
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#9 Post by Andrew Kotowski » December 10th, 2019, 6:45 am

Keep an eye on France 24 to see how the pension strikes are going. Paris is a goat rodeo right now with the metros shut down and TGV/AF service running at 50-75%... which means everybody and their mother is driving. This set of strikes is a bit different - it’s less violent than the yellow vest, but just about every union is participating.

https://www.france24.com/en/20191210-fr ... on-strikes

Other note - double check all of your reservations and plans for Paris, as you’re landing on New Years and staying through the weekend. Europe (but especially Paris) invented the bridge holiday, so I would expect quite a few places to be shut down until the following week, with the locals out of town, returning the following Monday.
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M. Taylor
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#10 Post by M. Taylor » December 11th, 2019, 7:59 pm

Shame that Les Crayeres is closed. We stayed there in April — incredible place, and dinner at Le Parc was amazing.
tastings: we had private tastings in Bordeaux (Palmer, Beaucaillou and Chevallier) because we had a good connection. Tastings in Champagne were group, even at smaller producers.
M a r k

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Andrew Kotowski
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#11 Post by Andrew Kotowski » December 12th, 2019, 12:05 pm

>> Keep an eye on France 24 to see how the pension strikes are going. Paris is a goat rodeo right now with the metros shut down and TGV/AF service running at 50-75%... which means everybody and their mother is driving. This set of strikes is a bit different - it’s less violent than the yellow vest, but just about every union is participating.

Will check in from time to time for you on this, as friends are ranting on my Facebook thread, but it's continuing to be a shit show. 10 of 14 Metro lines closed (i think 1 and 14 are driverless) and intra-EU travel is now backing up. Thalys (train) from AMS/Brussels is starting to cancel more and more trips and quite a few flights into CDG are delayed. Uncertain how this plays out over the holidays, but I'd keep it as a planning parameter. Unions are committing to strikes to the holidays, which might be a nice excuse to head to the countryside. https://www.france24.com/en/20191212-no ... ion-reform
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Russell Faulkner
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Re: First Time in France - Itinerary

#12 Post by Russell Faulkner » December 12th, 2019, 12:09 pm

Really depends where you are though. Bordeaux ran a practically normal service on trams and buses today.

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