Nicole Clicquot: The first business lady of the 19th century

"Only one quality, first-class!"- Tirelessly repeated it to their employees.It can be called the first business lady of its time, because it was the only one among male competitors, which could not be regarded as gallant.Nevertheless, she made everyone listen to your opinion, bravely risked always carefully proschityvaya fallback holy abide by the rules of the game and never let anyone let down, setting an example of honest attitude.

once frivolous Frenchmen wrote a song about champagne, which has these words: "Happy the world owes to the monk and the widow."That's the real truth: the monk Dom Perignon allocated muddy sediment in the effervescent grape wine and decided that he spoils this divine drink.His work continued the widow Clicquot winemaker Francois Barbe Nicole Clicquot-Ponsarden - that she came up with a way to remove this outrageous sediment.Since then, the wine of Reims, the main concern and the non-decreasing pride winemakers of Champagne, brings joy and fun around the world.

you will honor after marriage!

Madame Barbe Nicole Clicquot-Ponsarden never considered neither pretty or witty or elegant.Therefore, she did not like to pose - we had only one of its formal portrait.Since it looks to us as though dissatisfied to all the lady that could not be called frivolous and fun person.

But somehow we get those pretty quickly, barely sipped the famous "Vueve Clico Ponsardin" - a drink that is produced today, the descendants of this most unhappy beeches in a cap.What is the secret?It is also known that Nicole Barbe Clicquot-Ponsarden is neither easy temper, nor accommodating character, no kindness, no generosity, and yet has been two hundred years to the glory of her name in all languages ​​all over the world heard rave toast popping corkhear laughter and smiles lavished.

itself Nicole Barbe Ponsarden not really part of the fun in life.She grew up in a family is quite pragmatic bourgeois, however, filled with aristocratic: the title of baron personally granted her father the Emperor Napoleon.On a strict upbringing young Nicole Barbe is not affected: embroidery, poetry, gardening - even though employment is necessary to form the young lady, but very boring.There

family legend, according to which her mother used to say: "Oh, Nicole, I know you will honor soon after her marriage!"So sure was the most joyful day of her wedding in 1798: after learning that the daughter of the mayor of Reims married into the family of a successful wine merchant and producer Philip Clicquot in Reims, capital of Champagne, the famous snow-white cathedral came together the entire district.

It seems that this girl of twenty knew what to do, the father of her husband was a brave entrepreneur: he is one of the first, surprisingly local winemakers, slowpoke, organized trade under the family sign Clicquot and even crossed the border region: already in 1780, the first basket of winefrom the family home Clicquot went beyond France, into the unknown Moscow.

In the year wedding new husband and heir, Francois Clicquot attached to the case fully and, above all, expanding staff.I must say, in the house Clicquot able to select personnel, starting from 1801, his assistant, Louis Bon, the ancestor of modern managers, tirelessly travels the world in search of markets.In 1804, he first gets to Russia, where crosses patron of letters with the prediction of imminent success in this country.

Veuve Clicquot

But Capricious-luck somehow turned away from the house click on the booming family business: seven years after the wedding, suddenly dies young gentleman.How to live without Francois?Madame Clicquot in grief and despair.And how would you feel if on your hands suddenly appeared family castle, vineyard, requiring constant care, and the whole underground kingdom: cellars in the Cretaceous mountain for 24 kilometers ?!And reflect briefly Twenty-seven year widow, she decides to continue the work of her husband.

headed Empire

All agog Reims: woman - and suddenly the head of a solid family business!It is known that barely a woman closer to the cellars, the wine will turn into vinegar!But very few people knew that from the first years of marriage, Francois Clicquot devoted his young wife into the intricacies of conversion amber juice to sparkling wine.And suddenly found the widow, Nicole Barbe Clicquot-Ponsarden understand something in the production of champagne.
But to stop the gossip, she calls her husband's numerous assistants, especially Louis Bona, which becomes literally inseparable, from morning to night making detailed manner to report the slightest incident on the estate. She wanted to be aware of everything, and year after year, studies, records and analyzes all the technological details of the production of wine. What are the temperature and light in basements, soil composition, shape bottles - these questions from morning till night were heard in every corner of the estate of Madame Clicquot-Ponsarden. She led operation non-stop - a sure way to escape from the difficulties .They are necessary to fight every day, and year - the poor harvest, the villain-phylloxera, devourer of vines.Madame Clicquot even had to sell all their valuables - but it is not at all disappointed.The main thing is to achieve the same quality - the best.So year after year, perfected the famous champagne, the fame of which has already moved beyond the Champagne region of France and Russia and reached far.

Veuve Clicquot shall give Russia

about champagne "merry widow" revelers and connoisseurs of St. Petersburg knew firsthand.Champagne became the subject of enthusiastic odes, they began and ended booze hussars and elegant social events, champagne reconciled lovers, merchants fastened them a really good deal, actors celebrated the premiere, finally, without champagne did not do the Imperial House - in a word, in Russia there was no man, notacquaintance with champagne from "Vueve Clico Ponsardin", which was quickly transformed into a "klikovskoe."Prosper Merime with undisguised amazement wrote: "Veuve Clicquot gives to Russia. Its wine is called" klikovskoe "and not drink anything else."Best of all about feelings of "klikovskogo" Gogol said: "Well, just being in the empyrean!"

How did it happen that champagne as quickly and thoroughly Russian won the hearts and minds?Hardly Nicole Clicquot-Ponsarden took matters into his own vigorous pen, she immediately realized that her closely in his native Champagne Champagne - it is worthy to show him around the world.And in a few years the family business has increased exports to 110 000 bottles, and supplies were the largest in Russia - 25,000 bottles a year!

I must say a big thank you Louis Bon - he regularly spent a brilliant marketing investigation: "I inform you the good news. The queen is pregnant. If she will give birth to an heir, in this vast country will be drunk the sea of ​​champagne. Just do not say a word to anyone - our competitors cantake advantage of this. "This is a report of Mr. Bona - one of many that are now kept in the archives of the House, and it perfectly explains the secret of success lucky widow.Its competitors could only guess: Do not resort to the services of Madame dark forces?

For example, many then puzzled over the reasons for the rapid rise houses and found them ... in the family coat of arms: the names of the couple formed connection pattern reminiscent of an anchor, which, as we know, is the emblem of St. Petersburg.The sign of destiny?But Madame Clicquot-Ponsarden no time to think about the secrets of calligraphy - had to be sent to Russia all new trucks with "klikovskim"

... However, marriage more she did not come out, and intricate family crest Clicquot-Ponsarden today finalizingas anchors, proudly emblazoned on each bottle.

Of course, the House Clicquot had a difficult time.For example, the Emperor Napoleon has confused some house plans adventurous Russian campaign.However, the extremely popular "klikovskogo" from the political opposition not faded - miss him, carefully stored in the cellars of the remnants of old stocks and hoping for better times.They fell on to the satisfaction of both sides: for 1814, brilliantly overcoming the economic and ideological blockade, Barbe Nicole Clicquot-Ponsarden triumphantly returned to Russia.Famous bellied bottle, certainly in a horizontal position to keep a bouquet of champagne, and certainly dark glasses because sunlight will break the harmony of flavor, carefully wrapped in straw and drove countless carts to the eastern border."Veuve Clicquot" everywhere greeted with enthusiasm, everyone wants to make orders without fail for the whole year ahead, as if mindful of the recent blockade, and in his native Champagne Mrs. Clicquot proclaims the Great Lady (still famous Brut enterprise "Vueve Clico Ponsardin" is called that way,"Grande Dame") - this is a truly European success.

key to success - the endless worries

But Madame Clicquot little responds to the praises."Only one quality, first-class!"- Tirelessly repeats it to their employees.It can be called the first business lady of its time, because it was the only one among male competitors, which could not be regarded as gallant.Nevertheless, she made everyone listen to your opinion, bravely risked always carefully proschityvaya fallback holy abide by the rules of the game and never let anyone let down, setting an example of honest attitude.

By the way, in pursuit of a quality she never forgot about the people: generously encouraged hardworking and dedicated always been a good tradition of a family business.Basement Clicquot store personal memory of the successes of the House for all time - each named for a particularly distinguished employees.

Despite the growing fame time indefatigable widow does not differ from one another.In the morning she tireless warp through the vineyards, calculating what the soil is best suited to this grape variety.Fisted by nature, as a true Frenchwoman, she still buys vineyards Grand Cru, which soon brought her a new, truly international fame.She leads countless notebooks, dispassionately analyzes the successes and failures.Finally, in 1816. She first invented riddling table - just drilling a hole in the table!

Since winemakers of Champagne suit store the bottles in an inclined position, gradually changing the angle of the plane.So dark precipitates itself accumulates in the neck of the bottle.Of course, it is necessary to disturb the daily - always by hand every day, changing the angle of rotation.Then the precipitate is removed by freezing the neck.These secrets were forged in secret in the basement of Barbe Nicole Clicquot-Ponsarden, and eventually its wine becomes one of the most precious in the Champagne.Incidentally, with the precious bottles Brut "Grande Dame" in the basement of the company "Vueve Clicquot Ponsardin" still flipped manually.

Madame Clicquot-Ponsarden lived a long life: to 89 years, she surprised assistants and competitors indomitable entrepreneurial spirit, and the will to persevere in the small business .The children she was not, and as they say in the Champagne region, today a family business run by its very distant relatives.However, her constant demand "Clicquot champagne can be only one quality - the best" they have learned well and faithfully comply with the customs and traditions of the House.

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