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Stories from Mayflower Inn and Spa

Stories from Mayflower Inn and Spa

Do Garden Gastronomy with La Grande Dame in the Connecticut Countryside

Throughout the fall season, guests can enjoy La Grande Dame champagne at Mayflower Inn & Spa along with a series of exclusive on-site experiences designed to bring the concept of Garden Gastronomy to life. Locally grown vegetables and herbs take center stage in these unique culinary experiences to complement the precise and delicate taste of the wine, inspired by experiences hosted at the Verzy vegetable garden at Maison Veuve Clicquot in France.


La Grande Dame is the prestige cuvee of Veuve Clicquot and a showcase of the House’s excellence. Created in 1972 on occasion of the Maison’s 200th anniversary, the wine is a tribute to Madame Clicquot and to the creative and elegant souls who have followed in her footsteps.


As Madame Clicquot famously said, “Our black grapes give the finest white wines.” Over 200 years later, Veuve Clicquot’s enduring love of Pinot Noir finds its ultimate expression in La Grande Dame. Striking the perfect balance between strength and harmony, this cuvée is an oenological prowess, the result of our Cellar Master’s remarkable talent who strives to preserve its uniqueness.


From this constant quest for excellence comes Garden Gastronomy – a new, gastronomic experience inspired by La Grande Dame. Each La Grande Dame vintage is crafted from grapes harvested mainly from historical Grands Crus vineyards selected by Madame Clicquot herself.


In Fall of 2021, guests are invited to indulge in the sophisticated flavors of the La Grande Dame 2008 vintage in the comfort of the Connecticut countryside while discovering the La Grande Dame Chef’s Garden or enjoying a bountiful vegetable-forward supper curated by James Beard Award Winning Chef-in-Residence April Bloomfield.


“The idea of Garden Gastronomy charged me to think about seasonality and locality of produce in a different way, inciting new discoveries and flavor combinations. La Grande Dame is the perfect pairing for these vegetable forward dishes; each is designed to enhance the flavors of Veuve Clicquot’s prestige champagne and vice versa,” Chef April Bloomfield reflects.


The menu – designed with La Grande Dame in mind – is sophisticated and precise, where vegetables shine through and become the centerpiece of the dish, and is enhanced by the Pinot Noir structure of La Grande Dame champagne with its complex notes of dried apricot, hazelnuts, honey, and sugar candy.


In addition to the Plant to Plate: Harvest’s Bounty Dinner, guests will also have the opportunity to take a class on the Art of Fermentation to embrace the principles of Garden Gastronomy. In a one-hour experience with our expert culinary team, guests will learn how to ferment their favorite vegetables – sourced from local purveyors and the La Grande Dame Chef’s Garden – and will see firsthand how to make Kombucha, fermented tea. This experience highlights the singular taste of vegetables at their peak  and  La Grande Dame by Veuve Clicquot champagne.


If a guest is looking to dine outdoors, they are welcome to embrace nature with a Fresh Aire Picnic, starring produce sourced from local purveyors as they sip La Grande Dame champagne next to the Shakespeare Garden, beside the Mayflower Blue Heron Pond, or while venturing throughout property.


Garden Gastronomy with La Grande Dame will allow guests to indulge in an ongoing program that brings unique culinary and beverage pairings directly to the table through vegetables and herbs sourced from local purveyors and from our recently expanded La Grande Dame Chef’s Garden, located on property beside the outdoor pool.Stories from Mayflower Inn and Spa