Tim Bell, General Manager at Lancaster House tells us why Laurent-Perrier will always sit proud in the English Lakes wine list.
Winston Churchill said of it:
“In success you deserve it, and in defeat you need it”.
Virtually every leading celebrity will have been photographed drinking it. Here in Britain, we can’t get enough if it, drinking more than any other country in the world outside France, consuming a whopping 30.8 million bottles in 2013. Champagne is still the definitive sparkling wine, the product we all aspire to and wish to consume when we want to mark something special becoming synonymous with ‘celebration’.
October 28th is global champagne day. Here at English Lakes we believe that any occasion that demands Champagne should be one to remember and cherish for life, so why spoil it by drinking a sub-standard “imitation”? We’ve been proud to sell Laurent Perrier to our guests for as long as we’ve been around. There are many champagne ‘houses’ from which to choose, but “LP”, as we affectionately call it, ticks every box.
History of Laurent-Perrier
The original House of Laurent-Perrier was founded in 1812 by André Michel Pierlot but the name we now know, ‘Vve Laurent-Perrier’ didn’t come along until 1887 when Mathilde Emilie Perrier, the widow of Eugène Laurent, cellar master, combined the two family names following the death of her husband.
Mathilde’s daughter sold the house to Marie-Louise Lanson de Nonancourt in 1939 who ran the business during WWII whilst her two sons, Maurice and Bernard, joined the French Resistance. Maurice sadly died in a German Concentration camp. Bernhard however evaded capture and indeed even led his fellow countrymen to reach Adolf Hitler’s private wine cellar in Kehlsteinhaus in Bavaria, blowing off the steel doors revealing 500,000 bottles of wine which had been stolen by the Nazis in 1940. He was to be awarded the Croix de Guerre for his heroics during the conflict.
After learning every aspect of winemaking from vine to cellar and fired by a passion for champagne, people and traditional values, Bernard became Chief Executive. At that point, the House was employing around 20 people and shipping around 80,000 bottles a year. He established privileged working relationships with the grape growers and created the signature Laurent-Perrier style of freshness, lightness and elegance which are today exported to 147 countries worldwide with annual production totalling around 8,000,000 bottles. Today, Bernard’s two daughters, Alexandra Pereyre de Nonancourt and Stéphanie Meneux de Nonancourt oversee the continuation of their father’s work.
Celebrating over 200 years of Laurent-Perrier
To mark the 200th anniversary of Laurent Perrier in 2012, the General Manager’s of our Lake District Hotels, along with our local wine supplier, Lakeland Vintners, paid a visit to the Champagne House in Tours-sur-Marne to find out at close hand what makes this legendary champagne unique in its field.
A tour of the vineyards, house and cellars was followed by sampling in their famously pristine tasting room. It was the passion behind the wine which left a deep-lasting impression on us all. Every grape is still picked and chosen by hand, every bottle is still lovingly turned in their cellars, again by hand. This is truly an artisan wine, run by a genuine family company.
Here at English Lakes, our love and respect for the House of Laurent-Perrier is now greater than ever and we will always recommend this incredible champagne to our guests whatever the celebration.
The Laurent-Perrier range is available at all five the English Lakes properties.
Laurent-Perrier Champaign Tasting Evening
On Thursday 5th March the Waterhead will host a dinner and champagne tasting with Laurent-Perrier.
The night will include a gourmet dinner with the tastings of four champagnes from Laurent-Perrier. We will start with a champagne and canape reception followed by dinner with a different champagne paired to each course. The champagnes that have been selected for the tasting are Laurent-Perrier Brut, Ultra Brut, Rose and Vintage champagne from their portfolio.
If you would like to make a night of it and stay over then accommodation packages are also available for this event
For more details or to book a place at the dinner please contact Anthony on 015394 30705 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Article and photography by Tim Bell, General Manger at Lancaster House