Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Champagne: How the World's Most Glamorous Wine Triumphed Over War and Hard Times” as Want to Read:
Champagne: How the World's Most Glamorous Wine Triumphed Over War and Hard Times
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Champagne: How the World's Most Glamorous Wine Triumphed Over War and Hard Times

3.85  ·  Rating Details ·  269 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
Throughout history, waves of invaders have coveted the northeast corner of France: Attila the Hun in the fifth century, the English in the Hundred Years War, the Prussians in the nineteenth century. Yet this region – which historians say has suffered more battles and wars than any other place on earth – is also the birthplace of one thing the entire world equates with good ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published November 28th 2006 by Harper Perennial (first published November 1st 2005)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Champagne, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Champagne

The Devil in the White City by Erik LarsonSalt by Mark KurlanskyStiff by Mary RoachThe Professor and the Madman by Simon WinchesterThe Ghost Map by Steven Johnson
Microhistory: Social Histories of Just One Thing
203rd out of 1,149 books — 1,758 voters
Salt by Mark KurlanskyAt Home by Bill BrysonThe Professor and the Madman by Simon WinchesterGuns, Germs, and Steel by Jared DiamondA History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom Standage
Histories of the Everyday
66th out of 228 books — 259 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 760)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Nicole
Jul 18, 2008 Nicole rated it really liked it
From stories told by families about single fields to battles between regions for the use of the fields. Even battles between departments for just where the boundaries of la Champagne lie. Details and personalities abound in the story of effervescent wine. How kings and statesmen dance around the desire for a steady supply of wine and a desire for empire since it is difficult for vintners to produce great vintages when they have no grapes because a war either killed or drove the people into the c ...more
Julie
La Champagne, the region in northwestern France that is home to the world's most celebrated wine - 'le champagne'- has ever been at the crossroads of European history. In contrast to its rightful claim of a wine of superlative clarity, joy and finesse, Champagne has been the site of some of the bloodiest battles of ancient and modern times.

Don and Petie Kladstrup's lovely and heartbreaking book encapsulates an enormous stretch of history into 300 wonderfully readable pages. The authors original
...more
Raigo
Aug 13, 2013 Raigo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Hea ülevaade Champagne maakonna ja selle veinide lugematutest sõdadest pikitud ajaloost tugineb nii avalikest allikatest kui ka eraarhiividest (sealhulgas šampanjamajade arhiividest) pärit materjalidele. Autorid on arhiividest, varem ilmunud trükistest ning inimeste isiklikest mälestustest kokku kogunud suure hulga lugusid ja näitavad erinevaid sündmusi sageli ka üksikisiku vaatenurgast. Põnev ja hariv lugemine.

Raamatu "ametlik" tutvustus ütleb:

"Prantsusmaa kirdenurk on läbi aegade olnud sõdade
...more
Kim
In all honesty, I haven't finished this book yet. However, I am close to done, and enjoying it enough. I work in wine and so I find this book interesting. If you are interested in wine, very much enjoy Champagne or work in wine and/or food, this is an interesting enough little book about the wars, revolts, shady business deals and shady vintners the region has endured. It's also an interesting look at the progression of the region's wine, from an unfiltered still red table wine to a refined whit ...more
Javier
Sep 03, 2014 Javier rated it really liked it
A very thorough look at the history of Champagne, one of the world's most famous wine growing regions, and how wars (napoleonic, franco-prussian, world war I and II...) have marked the area, and the drink. Wine history aficionados will love it.
Andrew Smith
Feb 04, 2008 Andrew Smith rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Wine People
Recommended to Andrew by: Satan
Cannot... stay awake.. while reading. I don't know why I keep subjecting myself to reading these wine books. I read Kladstrup's other wine/war book and enjoyed it much more. Burgundy during the great wars was way more interesting than Champagne. Bordeaux, kinda lame, but still a little more interesting. I will say that I am holding my breath for the next book, "Oregon Pinot: How America's Tightest Varietal Triumphed Over Not Being Regularly Stocked In My Local Wine Shop".
Malika
Jan 21, 2014 Malika rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: food-and-wine
I am so glad this book is over. Such lovely and troubling stories - millions died, pain, war, greed and families so dedicated to the beauty of Bubbly that I needed to finish this book to honor the past.
Lisa
Jan 18, 2012 Lisa rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed reading about a region I had visited and a drink I LOVE as much for its taste as for the celebrations it represents. Reinforced for me the information our tour guide gave us on the way to Reims about the effects of war on the region.
This book was a pleasure to read filled with historical anecdotes.
Which of my champagne worshipping family members wants to read it next?
Michael
Jan 22, 2014 Michael rated it it was amazing
I had no idea. Fascinating.
Tina
Apr 09, 2015 Tina rated it it was amazing
A fantastic book, combining a tumultuous history and a gorgeous elixir.
Elizabeth
Mar 31, 2008 Elizabeth rated it liked it
I picked this book up randomly. I knew very little about Champagne the region or champagne the wine, so this book gave me a good introduction. That said, it had to cover a lot of materials. It jumped around at times, and didn't go into much detail. I'd be curious to read about about WWI in this region, as it was the most interesting aspect of the book.
Colleen
Jun 19, 2011 Colleen rated it liked it
A well-written background on the trials and tribulations of the people of Champagne and the famous wine. I'd already read "Wine and War" which covered a lot of the same information- and in a slightly more interesting way. So if you've read that one, I'd skip this one.
Valerie
Mar 22, 2010 Valerie rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: wine and war buffs
This is a great history of the Champagne region framed by the wars it has endured. My favorite part were the human interest stories peppered throughout. I'm not big on non-fiction but this held my interest.
Caitlin Gambee
Jan 12, 2011 Caitlin Gambee rated it did not like it
Started out really great - lots of famous figures connected to champagne... but as it progressed I grew bored and all of a sudden realized I didn't know who any of the characters were.
Lawrence
Light and easy read about champagne and the history of the region, France, the world in relation the bubbly. Entertaining, but I still prefer the actual beverage to reading about it.
Ellen
Aug 26, 2012 Ellen rated it liked it
A good little history. Brisk and informative; for the layperson rather than the academic. Surprisingly poignant in its coverage of the Franco-Prussian war, WWI, and WWII.
Karen
Mar 20, 2009 Karen rated it it was ok
Yawn. What a boring book. It's got some good juicy tales, but it's written so plainly that you practically have to take a nap in between. Interesting conversation piece.
jasmine
May 14, 2015 jasmine rated it really liked it
If I was French I would be absolutely furious, a creature made entirely of rage as my world fell apart around me. Drink champagne for the pain!
Colleen
Oct 02, 2007 Colleen rated it really liked it
I'm a huge fan of champagne and loved this book. It's a well written history of the region that's both entertaining and filled with interesting facts you never knew.
Jencstyer
Jul 30, 2008 Jencstyer rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: winos
Enjoyable historical portrait of the Champagne region and wine. All throughout this book I kept thirsting for a nice glass of bubbly. Quick, easy read.
Killilea
Jan 07, 2008 Killilea rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
great combination of wine lore, history, and irony. i did start it with high expectations, but have been pleasantly surprised.
Rakell
Aug 27, 2012 Rakell rated it it was ok


It started great but at some point it became really boring and I don't know how I was able to finish reading it.
Mike
May 11, 2014 Mike rated it really liked it
Interesting history of Champagne, looking forward to making my first batch of sparkling wine this spring.
Katherine
May 27, 2016 Katherine rated it it was amazing
Shelves: history
a definite read-again when I get it back, recommending to any wine, history, France travel fans
Rachel
Sep 13, 2007 Rachel rated it really liked it
Shelves: goodreads
Champagne, war, hard economic times, and a whole lot of French history. Quick, interesting read.
Devi
Nov 15, 2012 Devi rated it liked it
An interesting book about an interesting topic.

A relatively light read.
Tyger
Apr 22, 2009 Tyger rated it really liked it
Great history of champagne. Leaves you wanting more.

Lotus
Feb 24, 2008 Lotus rated it really liked it
A really interesting history of Champagne.
Lee
Sep 17, 2013 Lee rated it really liked it
Bubbly great!
Sarah
Sarah marked it as to-read
Sep 25, 2016
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 25 26 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Accidental Connoisseur: An Irreverent Journey Through the Wine World
  • Scotch Whisky: A Liquid History
  • Judgment of Paris: California Vs. France and the Historic 1976 Paris Tasting That Revolutionized Wine
  • Olives: The Life and Lore of a Noble Fruit
  • The Oxford Companion to Wine
  • The Frozen Water Trade: A True Story
  • Inventing Wine: A New History of One of the World's Most Ancient Pleasures
  • Red, White, and Drunk All Over: A Wine-Soaked Journey from Grape to Glass
  • Bacchus and Me: Adventures in the Wine Cellar
  • Taste: The Story of Britain Through Its Cooking
  • Nature's Perfect Food: How Milk Became America's Drink
  • Flushed: How the Plumber Saved Civilization
  • The New Sotheby's Wine Encyclopedia
  • Vanilla: Travels in Search of the Ice Cream Orchid
  • The Grapes of Ralph: Wine According to Ralph Steadman
  • World Atlas of Wine
  • Pickled, Potted, and Canned: How the Art and Science of Food Preserving Changed the World
  • Robbing the Bees: A Biography of Honey--The Sweet Liquid Gold that Seduced the World

Share This Book