Happy Birthday, Perrier Jouet – Paris Style

To say the Perrier Jouet Anniversary Gala was over the top would be an understatement. Beaux-arts de Paris was filled with exquisite photographs of everyone and every time of the champagne. As we walked along through the gallery, we were all dressed to the nines and then some.  I had meticulously picked out a long black dress with a white beaded lace top and a graduated overlay over the black jersey bottom which fit in perfectly and it was certainly the perfect setting to sip Champagne.

The evening included the picture of French elegance herself, actress Catherine Deneuve and her son, actor Christian Vadim, as well as model Jeri Hall and her daughter Georgia May Jagger, who is currently following in her footsteps as a model, and actor Alain Delon. Also on hand was Pernod Ricard royalty, including Chairman Lionel Breton and Cellar Master Hervé Deschamps, and the executives of the company's U.S. distributor, Southern Wine & Spirits.  I was honored to be one of only a handful of journalists invited and took in every moment.

After the cocktail hour, the curtain rose to reveal the magnificent tables laden with beautiful fresh white flowers, just like on the unmistakable Perrier Jouet bottles. The waiters brought out the first champagne – the soon to be released Belle Epoque 2004, a fast favorite of mine – in unison to the music.  We were treated to stunning footage of the house history and the unveiling of Daniel Arsham’s masterpiece as we sipped the Belle Epoque 1998, served from magnums like those which will be encased in the art.  A musical performance by British artist VV Brown topped off the evening. 

The only thing that wasn’t spectacular was the food – at least not for me.  Once again, Chef Jean-Louis Nomicos chose to ignore his advance notice of those with allergies as well as vegetarians.  We were simply told he had no time to make anything else besides his fish-filled menu that also included a tough piece of poultry that no one could quite define.  I did enjoy the ice cream in raspberry sauce and was not about to let the one chef in France I don’t like ruin and truly magnificent evening put on by Perrier Jouet, the staff of whom did everything possible to try to fulfill our needs.

After the gala, we were off to the after party at Pershing  Bar (the one in Paris, not the treehouse in Champagne). It was full of beautiful views and I finished my evening with a final toast to Perrier Jouet’s 200th birthday.

Photos by Jean Picon, with the exception of the picture of Catherine Deneuve and Christopher Vadim, from Celebrity Harcourt.


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