Champagne is awesome. Champagne between friends is even better. Champagne with friends in a forest-shrouded treehouse, atop rolling Champagne vineyards? Now that’s pretty hard to beat. A few weeks ago I (Kristen) spent a few days in Champagne and was lucky enough to rest my wings at the region’s most coveted perch.
I came across Perching Bar’s Instagram account a few months ago during one of my extended scrolling sessions and the images of drinking champagne in a treehouse IN Champagne tickled both my inner tree-clambering child and my enthusiasm for drinking beautiful wine in beautiful places. When I recently spent a weekend visiting friends in Reims, the biggest city in the region, I was thrilled when my Sunday hosts Philippe-Alexandre and Nicole offered to take me there for a spot of Champagne-and-nature appreciation.
Champagne happens to be one of the most accessible wine regions to visit for a quick day or weekend trip from Paris – on the train it takes only 45 minutes to get to the city of Reims, where a lot of the big houses as well as smaller boutique producers are located. However having a car there is pretty nifty to make it to slightly off-the-beaten-track (yet completely worthwhile) spots such as Perching Bar, which is located between Verzy and Verzenay and a short drive from both Reims and Epernay.
It’s a little bit of a hike to get to the entrance from the parking lot (advisable to leave any stiletto heels or frail folk at the Airbnb) but once you’ve paid the 16-euro entrance fee and traversed a network of wooden bridges through the forest canopy, you’ll be rewarded with a glass of perfectly-chilled bubbles and a soul-calming view of forest and vineyard.
The treehouse itself is a delight for anyone who appreciates modern design, and an abundance of Bollinger champagne will make any Bond fan feel right at home. And then of course there are the swing seats – eccentric yet keepin’ it classy at the same time (which, let’s face it, is often a hard balance to strike).
As for the champagne, the glass included in the entrance fee varies according to the daily selection. We were offered a choice of Bollinger Rosé and another lesser-known producer called Péhu Simonet. In the spirit of discovery, we went for the Péhu Simonet and were pleased with the bright, fresh and slightly sweet champagne.
I think the pictures speak for themselves so, dear friends, I’ll leave you to plan your own escapade to the Perching Bar. Just two quick pro tips from our own visit – 1) phone ahead to make sure they’re not booked for a private event, and 2) bring cards to play an outrageously complicated Italian card game. ;)
Perching Bar | Faux de Verzy, 51380 Verzy, France
Reservations required | For bookings: +33 (0)6 07 67 94 42