Tag Archives: Champagne-Ardenne

Sorry for the Dutch

I’ve been working on this little guide for a long time. And I have to apologize to my foreign followers … Here’s the Dutch…

Sinds de opening van de watermolen lag er in de la een blauwe multomap met printjes en foldertjes van wat er zoal in de buurt te doen is. De beduimelde ezelsoren en loszittende velletjes hebben we nog eens goed doorgelezen en opgeruimd. Alle tips en tricks zijn verzameld.

Nu is er de Kleine Gids voor de Champagne-Ardennen. Een lief klein persoonlijk boekje waarin ik kort aangeef wat er zo al te doen is in en om Tourteron. Met zijn 60 pagina’s is het Franse platteland zo saai nog niet.

Je kan er heerlijk wandelen en fietsen. En het hart van Europa –zoals ze hetzelf graag noemen– heeft een roerige geschiedenis. Je kan makkelijk even naar Reims, Charleville of de Champagne. Er liggen verborgen kloosters in donkere wouden. En er is van alles te doen voor kinderen.

Het boekje kan je bestellen via Blurb en kost € 11,95.

Translates as: There used to be a blue binder with tourist information in a drawer somewhere in the mill ever since the opening. We went through the dog-eared leaflets and papers and cleaned them up. We’ve collected all tips and tricks.

Now we have the Little Guide for the Champagne-Ardenne. It’s a sweet and small booklet in which I explain what the area has to offer. Looking at the 60 pages the country-side is not THAT boring after all. 🙂

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Tasting real Champagne

Our favorite

When I say champagne you say Bollinger, Canard-Duchêne, Kruger, Perrier, Mercier, Moët & Chandon, Mumm, Piper-Heidsieck, Pommery, or Taittinger. But did you know there are over 2,000 champagne producers? We visited a few in the Champagne region  to find the right bubbles for Supergîtes.

Some of the larger houses offer a grand tour through the factory and a ‘free’ drink afterwards. But don’t be mislead: by paying for the tour (€10 to 15 euros) you already paid generously for that drop of champagne. Other smaller houses offer free tasting but expect you to buy afterwards.

It’s basically not easy to buy at a smaller house. The smaller producers are all family owned for decades and a bit reserved (or reluctant as you wish) to offer a tasting and hoping you will buy a car load of champagne. Probably most tourists do drink and drive and leave the poor wine farmer an empty bottle AND empty pockets. That’s so not us. 🙂

A proper Champagne tour starts at Epernay at the Avenue de Continue reading

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Fortress or Chapel? The Quest for Supergites #2

It has been the idea from the start and an old principle; after 1 follows 2. Once started you have to continue. The Mill is up and running with some minor concerns like winter, garden and renters who break things. We are ready for number two and we’d like to share our thoughts.

Capture the basics of Supergites:

  • Supergites are high end vacation houses.
  • Supergites are luxuriously equipped with a mixture of modern and antique.
  • Supergites are spacious, with ample accommodations for eight.
  • Supergites are at historical locations in rural areas.

We’ve found two locations near the water mill of Tourteron that could match these criteria; a fortress dating 1880 and a chapel from the 15th century. We’d really like to know what you think of these two options. Would you go for the fortress or the chapel? Continue reading

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No TV?

Television icons
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In the final week of working hard to get things right (or just done), at a certain point you just have to make decisions. Nasty ones. You have to choose between the must-have and nice-to-have. And that’s not an easy job. One says he really thinks curtains are essential, the other claims to die without TV. Do we really need that door between the two basements? or do we put our energy in finding the right furniture? It’s constantly putting pressure on the working relationship because you’re just so tired you really don’t care what the other says or even about the arguments. All space evaporated. But what to do … you have to go on. Continue reading

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‘Zimmer Frei’

“Zimmer Frei?”…not anymore! We’ve just reached our first milestone with the Water Mill of Tourteron: Both summer months, July and August, are almost fully booked! There’s only one week left available in July. We’re super happy to see the first reservations coming in so quickly. All people who’ll fill the mill with joy and happiness. We so much looking forward to hear their stories and that they’ll really feel at home.

If you’re still doubting .. make a choice @supergites: it’s now or 2011 🙂

Time to Relax at a Supergite

Time to Relax at a Supergite

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Eating nearby: “Pretty Food and tasting even Better”

You have places where you eat and places where you have dinner. To our big surprice we discovered one in Mouzon. For sure we’re not the first: Les Échevins is in Michelin’s Guide Rouge and deserves this BIG time.

Each year, on my birthday, right between Christmas and New Year, we go hunting for a good restaurant in the French country side. This year we bumped into Les Échevins (the Aldermen) in the center of Mouzon, a peaceful quiet town with a huge church and an old city gate. It used to be of some importance but lost this stature centuries ago.

Les Échevins is an absolute MUST go if you stay around. The food does not only look pretty but it’s a feast for the taste buds.

A Taste Bud Melting Starter

Restaurant Les Échevins
33 r. Charles de Gaulle
F – 08210 Mouzon

Téléphone : 03 24 26 10 90
E-mail : lesechevins@orange.fr
Website : http://www.restaurant-lesechevins.fr

19€ (weekday lunch),
26€/51€ – Menu: 32€/46€

Cuisine – à la mode. A welcoming rustic restaurant in a 17C half-timbered building. Well-priced, daily-changing menus with precise cooking and direct flavours. Impeccable service.

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Starting to Campaign

Thermometer with Fahrenheit units on the outer...
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At the Mill of Tourteron everybody is working hard on the renovation. Deliveries of equipment and materials create a continues coming and going of trucks and vans. And even though it’s minus 3º Celsius the workmen don’t care and arrive at 7 in the morning to leave at 6 in the evening. Almost like ABC’s ‘Extreme Makeover: Home Edition‘ people are working around the clock.

The current severe winter is not helping much. Due to the freezing temperature we can’t pore concrete for the drainage nor for the bathrooms. First we’ll have to insolate the old wooden structure to start getting it a bit more cozy inside the mill. Stephane bought 4 heat blowers but in my modest opinion … i would even heat my bathroom with those. Too small for King Frost.

But nevertheless there’s improvement. The downstairs bathroom has a new wall. The ceilings have glass wool insulation. The new walls are built. We can’t wait to make new pictures.

So it’s time we start to communicate the Supergîte concept and spread the word: “A Supergîte has the comfort of a star hotel with the privacy of a home.”

With one of the biggest Dutch tour operators we added our publication (in Dutch – I know – it’s a start).

“Hot chocolate any one?”

Publication at D-Reizen

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