The tasting at Ruinart took much longer than scheduled, so we missed our appointment at Verzenay. Off to Ludes instead, to visit Ployez-Jacquemart, a smaller operation that has just begun running a bed & breakfast. Ran into a group in the middle of their tour - our entrance seemed a bit ominous. Two Chinese visitors climbing out of a black Mercedes, the driver giving instructions to the owner. There was a really hot looking tanned Australian beauty, but the lowbrow group from Manchester was just the worst.
You don't think of oak having a big role in Champagne, but many of the producers still rely on large casks to ferment and age the wines. The micro-oxygenation of the wood still gives you a roundness to the wines that stainless steel can't achieve. The cellars were finished quite nicely; not as deep, still impressive. A quick tasting of the wines, and then we headed back to Reims.