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The Widow Clicuot

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The Widow Clicuot is the New York Times bestselling business biography of the visionary young widow who built a champagne empire became a legend in her tumultuou. I had no idea champagne was this fascinating I enjoyed the history and development of this remarkable ebullient indulgence than I did her story Kitty Princess and the Newspaper Dress remarkable ebullient indulgence than I did her story

free download é eBook or Kindle ePUB ä Tilar J. Mazzeo

Icating book that is as much a fascinating journey through the process of making this temperamental wine as a biography of a uniuely tempered and fascinating wom. This biography of a woman and a wine takes place in the early 1800s in France at a time when women did not conduct business let alone take over their husband's business However Barbe Nicole Clicuot Ponsardin was no oridnary woman She had witnessed the French Revolution lived through the Napoleonic Wars national banking disasters and the death of her husband possibly from typhus or by suicide Monsieur Clicuot had a dream of making a superior champagne which his young widow was determined to make a reality With determination innate savviness and advice from her own family and in laws all of whom were involved in business and trade that dream became a reality In her lifetime Veuve Clicuot became one of the best known and highly rated champagnes which is still true today The story of its creator has been something of a mystery but the research that forms the basis for this enthralling biography reveals the portrait of a determined bright and shrewd businesswoman who lived during a turbulent period in French history and created an enduring heritage A toast to her à sa santé and to many other women who have left their marks in the business of culinary artsDuring this exceptional time when all of our libraries are closed to the public and hard copy books are not available please consider the Los Angeles Public Library's e Media materials right hereHere is a list of works written by or about other daring women who were involved in the culinary arts Edna Lewis at the table with an American originalIn pursuit of flavor by Edna LewisFasting and feasting the life of visionary food writer Patience GrayM F K Fisher's ProvenceAs they were by M F K FisherThe theortical foot by M F K FisherConsider the oyster by M F K FisherSouth wind through the kitchen by Elizabeth DavidAn omlette and a glass of wine by Elizabeth DavidPalestine on a plate memories from my mother's kitchen by Joudie KallaShuk from market to table the heart of Israeli home cooking by Einat AdmonyMy American dream a life of love family and food by Lidia BastianichBitter almonds recollections recipes from a Sicilian girlhood by Mary Taylor Simeti and Maria GrammaticoSicilian food recipes from Italy's abundant isle by Mary Taylor SimetiLove and kisses and a halo of truffles letters to Helen Evans Brown edited by John FerroneThe cheese board collective works bread pastry cheese pizza by the Cheese Board Collective Staff; forward by Alice WatersReviewed by Sheryn Morris Librarian Central Library

Tilar J. Mazzeo ä 3 free download

S times and showed the world how to live with style Tilar J Mazzeo brings to life the woman behind the label Barbe Nicole Clicuot Ponsardin in this utterly intox. Barbe Nicole Ponsardin was born in Reims France in 1777 She was plain yet her merchant father married her to the wealthy young Francois Clicuot a man of her class With ample support Francois and his wife took over his family's languishing wine business They hired a brilliant salesman Louis Bohne who persuaded Russians that they should buy Clicuot Still the couple struggled set back by wars which got in the way of commerce and weather which was alternately too hot for stored wine and too wet for growing grapes When Francois died in 1805 records say from typhoid rumors circulated that it had been a suicideTilar J Mazzeo shows how the ebb and flow of French politics offered briefly an opportunity for women like Barbe Nicole to go into business Her family helped finance Veuve widow in French Clicuot but insisted she take on an older male partner The partnership grew fitfully The wine Champagne needed a second fermentation to give it fizz but the extra sugar often made it unacceptably gunky and cloudy Bottles exploded And Europe was still at warBut war became an opportunity Her partnership concluded Barbe Nicole defied export laws making sure her Champagne would be the first into Russia after the Napoleonic Wars Bohne sent back giddy word Veuve Clicuot was a phenomenal successMazzeo's tale moves swiftly through Barbe Nicole's many accomplishments including her method for storing bottles nose down an innovation that allowed the second fermentation detritus to be cleared efficiently setting her far ahead of her competitors But when Mazzeo strives to imagine her interior life the book falls flat There are no diaries and few personal notes to help Despite the author's best efforts Barbe Nicole remains an enigma one who will remain best known by her product Veuve ClicuotReviewed for the LA TimesOctober 28 2009httparticleslatimescom2008oct


10 thoughts on “The Widow Clicuot

  1. says:

    Luvly bubbly Come uickly I am drinking the stars Dom Perignon the cellar master of the ancient hillside abbey in the village of Hautvillers in the 1660s allegedly called out when his still wine developed unwanted bubbles For many years he tried to find the source of his wine going 'bad' Wine makers in the seventeenth century had a less charitable phrase for it They called the bubbly vintage 'Devil's wine' Nobody in France wanted fizzy wines Yeux de crapaud Frogs eyes it was called Those large bubbles People liked large eyes everywhere except in Champagne wine In the meantime however other viticulteurs already had plans to market this unusual wine Dom Perignon was not the first And the French was not the first either It was the British who saw the potential when the wine barrels from Champagne arrived and the uaint little bubbles tickled their noses and the dainty noises enchanted themBut this is not really the crux of the book The genesis of champagne through the history of France have been used to build a fictional speculative biography around Madame Barbe Nicole Clicuout née Ponsardin Widow Clicuot or Veuve Clicuot 16 December 1777 – 29 July 1866 known as the Grand Dame of ChampagneArtist Léon CognietPerhaps it was an ambitious projects to try and write a biography even if it is fictional around someone who was not publicly known during her lifetime There was a reason for that though Her father Ponce Jean Nicolas Philippe Ponsardin from 1813 Baron Ponsardin a textile manufacturer and politician was a staunch royalist and industrialist and he uickly had to sing a new tune when the angry hordes entered the cities and destroyed the property and lives of the aristocracy and their collaborators during the French Revolution He became a Jacobin revolutionary himself Despite his change of sides the less anyone knew about his family the safer they were His daughters were kept a secret while he adapted his politics to the republican mantra in an effort to safe his fortune and family He succeeded But there was another reason why historians did not deem it necessary or important to document Veuve Clicuot's life Barbe Nicole and her sister had learned from the time the were small girls studying catechism in their convent school that the only women with public reputations were prostitutes or ueens Even the two most famous women of Barbe Nicole’s day—Marie Antoinette and Joséphine Bonaparte—were famous only because of their choice of husbands It is probably not a coincidence that the public still thought of them both as whores Any person resembling wealth or nobility stood a chance of being decapitated Musing on the invisibility of women like Barbe Nicole and her sister Clémentine the novelist Virginia Woolf wrote simply “Anonymity runs in their blood”Yet a formidable woman the mother of champagne—which was originally just called vin mousseux—sparkling wine—deserves a little acknowledgment as one of the most important female entrepreneurs in modern history Her nineteenth century competitors at the time included Jean Rémy Moët and his son in law Pierre Gabriel Chandon Does Moët et Chandon ring a bell? Jules Mumm Louis Roederer Charles Heidsieck and Her grandmother’s family the pioneering RuinartsBorn in a wealthy well connected family Veuve Clicuout had the angels and gods on her side for various reasons First off she was born in a palatial mansions facing 'rue Cérès one of the city’s main boulevards with a symmetrical facade of endless airy windows The street was named after the Roman goddess of bountiful harvests'Secondly at the age of 21 she married another industrialist's son François Clicuot was the son of a wealthy textile millionaire and wine maker Their dowries coming from both families made the two young people instant millionaires at the signing of the marriage license The marriage only lasted six years when her husband passed away from typhoid fever She became a widow at the age of 27Building a non fictional biography throwing in terms such as 'imagine's' 'perhaps'es 'it would not have come as a surprise' 'I expect's' 'hazard some guesses' 'likely's 'probably's''surely's 'must have's and another few often several times per page can become like scratching screeeeeeeching chalk on a black board However the author used a wide variety of resources through meticulous research to patch together the life of a remarkable woman I thought it was a brilliant idea If she presented the story as a fictional biography removed the speculative terms added a strong story line colorful characters historical details and suspense it could have worked splendidly Nevertheless the history provided in the book was riveting and fascinating The challenges were numerous and diverse Political upheavals wars famines unraveling economies natural disasters lack of scientific knowledge problems with glass production and fate All these elements were entertaining and highly informative I certainly learnt a lot and enjoyed doing so through this bookVeuve Clicuot had a few cards up her sleeve in saving her company initially known as Veuve Clicuout Fourneaux She never gave up Never compromised Not even when the Russians tried to raid and destroy her cellars; and not even when the British in their effort to isolate France closed all harbors from Amsterdam to the North Sea destroying all possibilities of wine exports She changed every single draw back into a resounding come back Nothing kept her down She changed her company name to Veuve Clicuout Ponsardin and Company and eventually became one of the most wealthiest women in Europe even in today's standards She transformed a fledgling family wine trade a small well funded but struggling family wine brokerage into one of the great champagne houses of the world But it did not come uick or easy Bankruptcy hammered on her door a few times thanks to Napoleon which changed her 14 hour workaholic days into overdrive Hardheaded and unstoppable Courage by the barrel load Another good luck charm was the Napoleonic Code which confined married women to a reproductive life adorning their lavish opulent homes Widows however had the same rights and mobility as men in all walks of life Veuve Barbe Nicole Clicuot was allowed to follow in the commercial tradition of both families embracing industry and entrepreneurial traditions That was the law She grabbed her opportunities and ran with it However social s and values changed again forcing women back into the kitchens barefoot and pregnant yet Barbe Nicole Clicuout forged ahead establishing one of the first versions of corporate identities in the world Chardonnay was the grape of the fizzy fantasy Adding a scoop of sugar and brandy to it gave it a boisterous bubble Although the Russians like it toxic sweet the rest of the royal establishments demanded a refined dignified product For many decades it was the nectar of the most fortunate Today champagne is ranked from driest to sweetest in categories that progress from brut nature naturally strong extra brut extra strong and brut strong on the dry end and then—despite the hopelessly misleading names—on into the categories of sec dry extra secextra dry demi sec half dry and doux gentle on the sweeter endEssentially brut is dry and sec is sweet Our demi sec—one of the sweeter champagnes on the market—has up to twenty grams of sugar per bottle In wine making experts talk of the indefinable essence of terroir the gift that the land gives to the grape and that creates the potential range of tastes and aromas it can express Well for the social climbers this concept should become a new buzz word if it isn't one already Terroir is just as meaningful in vegetable production through thousands of years Soil high in minerals produces healthier vegetables and fruits That's an ancient secret The fruit and veg farmers just did not label their produce with the elitist etiuette terroir Well the champagne fundis was first so good for them I recently listened to a radio talk show in which terroir was the new concept in South African wine production I laughed every time the poor presenter struggled to pronounce the word The word was clearly still a scary possibility in her world but it did have her in delightful shudders to test it on an unsuspecting South African publicI LOVED this non fictional speculative biography It read like a suspenseful adventure tale Entertaining informative exciting most of the time Catching up on history was the biggest thrillSo this is the story of champagne and how a woman beat the odds and put romance back in wine She made it affordable to everyone branded and trademarked it and made celebrations what it is today a kissing of the stars when the cork pops up and roams the skies


  2. says:

    Thin Based largely on speculation this book would have made a much better historical novel than biography Little actual information is known about Barbe Nicole Ponsardin so Mazzeo filled in based upon the known history of France and the rest of Europe in the 1800s The details about the history of the wine industry made up most of the solid information and were interesting but the book was supposed to be about than that Ponsardin and the rise of Veuve Clicuot Additionally for coming in at less than 200 pages there is a lot of repetitive information throughout and the notes are odd there are millions of them but no footnotes or endnotes to reference readers to the correct information


  3. says:

    I had no idea champagne was this fascinating I enjoyed the history and development of this remarkable ebullient indulgence than I did her story


  4. says:

    At the face of it this seems like a good long biography Until you realize that you've never seen 'perhaps'es 'likely's 'surely's 'must have's and on and on in one place in your life More that 90% of this book is the author imagining the widow Clicuot's life from little tiny details she gleaned from here and there 3 perhaps per page is a conservative estimate not including all the other fluffy imagination words And yet Mazzeo still tries to present this as nonfictional biography I mean she clearly did her research because the last 13 of the book is primarily bibliographic references But as this was practically fiction anyways it would have been way interesting and engaging as a based on a true story historical fictionAs it was much of the information was repeated over and over in slightly different ways to fill up space A lot of the sentences were extremely and unnecessarily long and unwieldy to the point that often I had to reread them several times to figure out what Mazzeo was trying to say I also didn't connect with the Widow Clicuot at all which might not be bad in and of itself except that I think that was one of Mazzeo's main goals for this workThere was some interesting information but I came out at the end completely ambivalent and I was glad to find that the last 13 of the book was references and book club prompts instead of stuff for me to read


  5. says:

    Barbe Nicole Ponsardin was born in Reims France in 1777 She was plain yet her merchant father married her to the wealthy young Francois Clicuot a man of her class With ample support Francois and his wife took over his family's languishing wine business They hired a brilliant salesman Louis Bohne who persuaded Russians that they should buy Clicuot Still the couple struggled set back by wars which got in the way of commerce and weather which was alternately too hot for stored wine and too wet for growing grapes When Francois died in 1805 records say from typhoid rumors circulated that it had been a suicideTilar J Mazzeo shows how the ebb and flow of French politics offered briefly an opportunity for women like Barbe Nicole to go into business Her family helped finance Veuve widow in French Clicuot but insisted she take on an older male partner The partnership grew fitfully The wine Champagne needed a second fermentation to give it fizz but the extra sugar often made it unacceptably gunky and cloudy Bottles exploded And Europe was still at warBut war became an opportunity Her partnership concluded Barbe Nicole defied export laws making sure her Champagne would be the first into Russia after the Napoleonic Wars Bohne sent back giddy word Veuve Clicuot was a phenomenal successMazzeo's tale moves swiftly through Barbe Nicole's many accomplishments including her method for storing bottles nose down an innovation that allowed the second fermentation detritus to be cleared efficiently setting her far ahead of her competitors But when Mazzeo strives to imagine her interior life the book falls flat There are no diaries and few personal notes to help Despite the author's best efforts Barbe Nicole remains an enigma one who will remain best known by her product Veuve ClicuotReviewed for the LA TimesOctober 28 2009httparticleslatimescom2008oct


  6. says:

    Interesting premise but the author's writing style was distracting writing in the first person in odd places It reminded me of episodes of Saved by the Bell in which Zach would turn to the camera as though no one else was there The story could have been told better in the hands of another


  7. says:

    The subtitle is all the synopsis anyone needs The Story of a Champagne Empire and the Woman Who Ruled ItBarbe Nicole Ponsardin was born on the eve of the French Revolution Her wealthy father read the signs of change and positioned himself to ride the wave saving his textile business his homes his fortune and his family When Barb Nicole was of age she married Francois Clicuot the only son of another wealthy textile merchant whose family had begun to dabble in wine As fate would have it Francois died before his vision was realized but his young widow took over and cornered the market before anyone realized what she was doing The dynasty she built remains today as one of the premier champagne houses The author in an effort to not misrepresent freuently ualifies statements with “perhaps” or “might have” Mazzeo herself writes about this lack of information It is a surprisingly thin biographical record considering Barbe Nicole’s celebrity and accomplishments and writing this book has been an exercise in the obliue I wanted to discover not just what she did and when she lived but how she was able to imagine for herself a different future and how she was able to negotiate those familiar crossroads of grief despair and opportunityI appreciate that Mazzeo was stymied by scarce records few if any letters or documents that would support a definitive and declarative portrait and that she wanted to produce a work of non fiction not a fictionalized biography But the result in my humble opinion is a book that gives me facts but never brings the lady at the center of the story to life I love champagne though I admit to never having sampled Veuve Clicuot I also love reading about strong independent women especially when they were clearly ahead of their time But I was bored for much of this book I wanted of Barbe Nicole herself


  8. says:

    Fascinating history of Clicuot Ponsardin champagne house and the Veuve Widow Clicuot Unfortunately very little of the Widow's letters diary etc survived and so the author had to use a tremendous amount of indirect information to construct the personal history of Barbe Nicole Ponsardin Clicuot She did a great job with the limited resources available And the history of the rise of Champagne is fascinating


  9. says:

    This biography of a woman and a wine takes place in the early 1800s in France at a time when women did not conduct business let alone take over their husband's business However Barbe Nicole Clicuot Ponsardin was no oridnary woman She had witnessed the French Revolution lived through the Napoleonic Wars national banking disasters and the death of her husband possibly from typhus or by suicide Monsieur Clicuot had a dream of making a superior champagne which his young widow was determined to make a reality With determination innate savviness and advice from her own family and in laws all of whom were involved in business and trade that dream became a reality In her lifetime Veuve Clicuot became one of the best known and highly rated champagnes which is still true today The story of its creator has been something of a mystery but the research that forms the basis for this enthralling biography reveals the portrait of a determined bright and shrewd businesswoman who lived during a turbulent period in French history and created an enduring heritage A toast to her à sa santé and to many other women who have left their marks in the business of culinary artsDuring this exceptional time when all of our libraries are closed to the public and hard copy books are not available please consider the Los Angeles Public Library's e Media materials right hereHere is a list of works written by or about other daring women who were involved in the culinary arts Edna Lewis at the table with an American originalIn pursuit of flavor by Edna LewisFasting and feasting the life of visionary food writer Patience GrayM F K Fisher's ProvenceAs they were by M F K FisherThe theortical foot by M F K FisherConsider the oyster by M F K FisherSouth wind through the kitchen by Elizabeth DavidAn omlette and a glass of wine by Elizabeth DavidPalestine on a plate memories from my mother's kitchen by Joudie KallaShuk from market to table the heart of Israeli home cooking by Einat AdmonyMy American dream a life of love family and food by Lidia BastianichBitter almonds recollections recipes from a Sicilian girlhood by Mary Taylor Simeti and Maria GrammaticoSicilian food recipes from Italy's abundant isle by Mary Taylor SimetiLove and kisses and a halo of truffles letters to Helen Evans Brown edited by John FerroneThe cheese board collective works bread pastry cheese pizza by the Cheese Board Collective Staff; forward by Alice WatersReviewed by Sheryn Morris Librarian Central Library


  10. says:

    After Barbe Nicole Ponsardin and François Clicuot are married they begin trying to enlarge and enhance the Clicuot family's sparkling wine business until then a small sideline income for the family Francois is determined to open up exports to Russia and beyond and after his untimely death Barbe Nicole carries on his work Over a period of years and despite many setbacks she succeeds in creating the Champagne empire we know today as Veuve ClicuotWhile this is a fascinating book in theory there's not really much to go on Barbe Nicole left very few papers and letters so much of the author's conclusions here are speculative She guesses at motivations and personality traits that could not actually be known The book is also terribly repetitive turning the same handful of ideas over and over The really interesting stuff is the history of Reims and the genesis of the Champagne industry but Barbe Nicole's story is slim at best


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