You know it’s going to be a good night if you’ve scored a spot at the chef’s table in a Michelin-starred restaurant. But if that chef’s table is in the wine cave of a Paris hotel built at the request of Louis XV, you know it’s going to be a great night.
As promising as the overall setting might be—and with all due apologies to the chef, the décor, and City of Lights—the heart of this particular experience is about wine. Starting September 6, the Hôtel de Crillon, on Paris’s stunning Place de la Concorde, is hosting a series of exclusive wine and food tastings for conversation-inducing groups of 12 with head sommelier Xavier Thuizat. Surrounded in La Cave by 2,000 of the hotel’s 40,000-bottle collection built by Thuizat, guests will enjoy 5 wines paired with 10 light bites created by chef Christopher Hache of de Crillon’s Michelin-starred L’Ecrin restaurant—guided by the expert Thuizat throughout.
Each evening will be built around a theme—a region or a category of wine—ranging from Europe’s great reds and whites all the way to sake, for the adventurous. And Thuizat’s choices will highlight prestigious vineyards and producers. Here is what to expect through December (140 euros per person for each program):
September 6: Burgundy
September 20: the Loire Valley
October 4: Harvest Special
October 18: Alsace
November 8: the Rhône Valley
November 15: Japanese Sake
November 29: Champagne
December 13: Wine for the Holidays
Fronted by the majestic 18th Century design of Ange-Jacques Gabriel, Louis XV’s chief architect, the Hôtel de Crillon is a slice of Place de la Concorde history. Originally the residence of the Count de Crillon, it was reimagined as a hotel in 1909 under the auspices of architect Walter-André Destailleur, ushering in stays by politicians, celebrities, and royalty. Most recently, the iconic hotel (a Rosewood property now) has undergone a four-year transformation, re-opening just last year.
Expect the walls in La Cave to speak of history, and the two-hour experience with Thuizat to be a gastronomical exploration to write home about.