There is an overwhelming amount of things to do and see in Paris. A first trip often includes all the main things- the Eiffel tower, Louvre, Musee Orsay, Notre Dame, a Seine River Cruise, and a whole host of other “must sees.” I’ll be the first to admit that you can go absolutely crazy trying to see and do it all. And really those that have been to Paris multiple times will tell you to slow down and just wander, get off the beaten path and just savior it. It’s hard not to have a ridged itinerary fulled with every major sight. I know, I have been there.
So let’s get down to it. Hands down the best thing I’ve done in Paris so far involves wine and learning! Yes, a Wine and Cheese Lunch at O Chateau. French wine and cheese! If that didn’t get your attention, I don’t know what will!
Famous French sommelier and author Olivier Magny’s O Chateau is located at 68 Rue Jean-Jacques Rousseau, just a 5 minute walk from the Louvre.
I booked our spot for this wine tasting lunch online through the O Chateau website about a week before we left home. I had been wanting to do a wine tasting in Paris and after some research decided on the popular O Chateau. I had read one of Magny’s books called Stuff Parisians Like and found it a comical take on what it takes to make those oh-so-chic Parisians tick. He is far from the classic “wine snob” and his mission is to make wine drinking a fun and accessible experience and I am all about the fun…and wine.
When we arrived, we were seated in a private room with a large table set with glasses, platters of cheeses, charcuterie. and bread. Our small group of 10 consisted of 2 couples, Renee and I, and a group of girls. Our English speaking sommelier was fun and very knowledgeable. We sampled 1 Champagne and 4 wines while different cheeses were suggested with each wine. Questions were highly encouraged. It was a relaxed and fun atmosphere and I learned so much about French wine, reading French labels, and the wine regions around France. I discovered that I loved a Sancerre, which I never had before. I realized why the French take great pride in their wine and each region is completely different from the other (Loire Valley, here I come!!).
After a few samples our group relaxed and some fun conversation began. We clearly had a group that mixed well together and some fun banter began. We all exchanged stories why we were in Paris. Keeping the flow going, our sommelier had to reign us in at times, but it was all in good fun and I think she was having fun too.
After the hour and a half was over, we sat around for awhile and chatted. Many of us bought wine to bring home. I bought 2 bottles of my favorite to stuff in my suitcase to enjoy at home. Yes, they did make it home as they were tightly bundled with all the clothing I purchased!!
I have to say that of all the things I have done in Paris, this was one of my favorites! This Wine and Cheese lunch at O Chateau was very educational and fun. What better way to learn a little about wine than to learn about it in one of the best wine bars in Paris. It’s cool to be able to go into a wine store and read the label on a French bottle.
Of course if you just want to wander and stop in to O Chateau for a glass of wine or some delicious food, they have a wonderful wine bar and restaurant where there are over 50 wines to choose from by the glass and a menu that changes with the seasons and the chef’s inspiration. Reservations are recommended.
Even a midlife girl from Wisconsin can feel comfortable doing a wine tasting in Paris at O Chateau! If you love wine and want a wonderful French wine experience without the snobbery, book a wine tasting on your next trip to Paris!!
If you are looking for a place to stay for your trip to Paris, check out my post here.
All opinions are honest accounts of my experiences. I did not receive any compensation for this post.