I have just finished "The Widow Cliquot" about Barbe-Nicole Cliquot, who when she became a widow (veuve) established the vineyard that became Veuve Cliquot, changed the way champagne was made and marketed, and nurtured it into the industrial powerhouse that provides us with the magnificent champagne that I am SO fond of today
A fantastic story of a woman with a business brain and ambition at a time when there were no powerful women outside of the aristocracy. A recommended book that is not only about a fascinating woman, but also about the process of making champage. I think I could do with a glass of it right NOW!
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Lesley West (Beatleman1ac)
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Amazon Best of the Month, October 2008:With its trademark fizz and sparkling taste, champagne has long been the beverage of choice for those in a celebratory mood. From the artillery of popping corks on New Year's Eve to the clinking of newlywed glasses, a bit of the bubbly has locked arms with good cheer for centuries. Yet had it not been for the pioneering Barbe-Nicole Ponsardin, the libation deemed "the wine of civilization" by Winston Churchill might today be available only to the excessively wealthy or extremely lucky. Author Tilar J. Mazzeo toasts the élan of Champagne's Grand Dame withThe Widow Clicquot, a fascinating story of the cunning bravery and good fortune that helped build the Veuve Clicquot brand. Widowed at age twenty-seven by the death of her husband François Clicquot, Barbe-Nicole assumed control of her family’s wine business amid the chaos of The Napoleonic Wars. That she became a prominent female leader in a male-dominated industry was one thing; building an empire amid savage political unrest was quite another. With passionate research and true admiration for her subject, Mazzeo pays homage to the beloved Widow from Reims and the remarkable weight her name still carries today.-Dave Callanan--This text refers to theHardcoveredition.