Côte des Bar in Aube: the southern champagne region that you should not miss!

Last Updated on by Charlotte van de Sande

Aube en Champagne, also known as the Côte des Bar, is the southern champagne region in France. This unknown champagne area is fast becoming the hotspot of the champagne region. And since this also the place where we are getting married, we will be here more often in the coming year and continuously update this blog with new findings!


The southern champagne region of Côte des Bar

Formerly the ugly duckling of the champagne region because there were no large champagne houses in Aube en Champagne. Today, Côte des Bar is the place-to-be! But why is Côte des Bar so different and special?

Traditionally, there are no large commercial champagne houses and famous names in the southern champagne region. The grapes were usually sold to the larger houses in and around Reims. Yields were lower, so the land was also cheaper. The region was so unpopular that until 1927 it was called the “Champagne deuxième zone” or “second-rate champagne region”. In the early 1900s, the big producers in the Reims region even tried to deprive the Aube of its official classification of champagne regions. This led to huge strikes by the champagne farmers in Côte des Bar.Champagne tour in the vinyards Charlotte Plans a Trip

Aube en Champagne: hot and happening!

So Côte des Bar (or the Aube en champagne) has always been a bit of a stranger. This in combination with the cheap soil resulted in a number of champagne farmers who dared to take a risk in the 21st century. They got rid of the traditional and in their opinion outdated way of making champagne and started experimenting with the champagne process. With more attention to the impact of the type of soil, the environment and pest control. And this switch is paying off! In 20 years, the amount of vineyards has been increased by over 20% and champagne from the Côte des Bar champagne region is more popular than ever! Additional advantage: the champagne from the Côte des Bar is less expensive than that from the Marne Valley (the champagne valley near Reims and Épernay).

How long this will be the case is the question. Due to the high popularity, the price of the land is also starting to rise. Currently, an acre of vineyard is worth a million euros, which is quite expensive.

Tip: although the region is becoming increasingly popular, in terms of tourism, this area is still much quieter than Épenery and Reims. Tours are much cheaper and you often sit directly at the table with the champagne farmer. So much more special!Local beautiful hotels in the champagne region France


Where is the Côte des Bar?

The Côte des Bar is the southernmost champagne region. It is located in the Aube department and borders Burgundy. You can reach the Côte des Bar in about 2 hours from Reims. The City of Troyes is a 30-minute drive away. Below a map of the champagne region with the different regions.The Champagne region decided in multiple areas

In contrast to the Marne Valley (the most famous champagne region near Reims and Épernay), Côte des Bar is much less dense with vineyards. The rolling landscape consists of small villages, forests, grain fields and the occasional champagne field. Most vineyards are from small champagne farmers who do this in addition to their other jobs, with very small numbers of champagne bottles each year. It is so much fun to sit with them at the kitchen table and learn more about their business. Here you really feel the love for champagne and the production process!


Curious about the northern Champagne region? We wrote a travel guide about Épernay and what to do here!


Bar-Sur-Aube and Bar-Sur-Seine

The Côte des Bar champagne region is divided into two districts named after the towns of the same name: Bar-Sur-Aube (east of Troyes) and Bar-Sur-Seine (southeast of Troyes).

Other villages in the champagne region of Côte des Bar

There are all kinds of nice villages in the southern champagne region Côte des Bar. The villages per district:

Bar-Sur-Aube:

  • Bar-Sur-Aube itself (picturesque village)
  • Colombey-Les-Deux-Eglises (picturesque and memorial of Charles de Gaulle)
  • Voigny (picturesque centre)
  • Colombé-la-Fosse-Arrientieres (sunflower fields and a beautiful castle)
  • Champignol-lez-Mondeville

Bar-Sur-Seine

  • Bar-Sur-Seine itself (cosy and picturesque)
  • Essoyes (residence of the painter Renoir)
  • Mussy-sur-Seine (beautiful church and castle)
  • Noë-les-Mallets (great views)
  • Les Riceys (beautiful old mansions)

Local streets in the champagne area


Our favourite champagne houses in the Côte des Bar champagne region

It is fair to say that during this first visit we mainly focused on champagne houses in Bar-Sur-Aube district. The reason: this is the district where we are getting married and so we got some nice recommendations from our wedding venue!

So herewith 5 champagne houses or champagne farmers where you can taste delicious champagne in the Champagne region of Bar-Sur-Aube.

1. Albert Beerens (in the village of Arrentières)

The two sisters who currently run the modern champagne house Albert Beerens know the ropes! This champagne house, which produces approximately 35,000 champagne bottles annually, uses a sustainable growth and production process. All three famous champagne grapes, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay, grow here. Anne-Laure, one of the two sisters who showed us around, has just completed intensive training in the field of soil knowledge (terroir). With this, she wants to understand even better how the soil can be stimulated in the best and most sustainable way and which grapevines should be planted in which place.

After Anne-Laure has given us a tour of the champagne house and the cellars, it is time to taste the champagne. We drink a total of four different champagnes. But our two favourites are certainly the Cuvée Blanc de Blancs and the Cuvée Blanc de Noirs.

It is possible at champagne house Albert Beerens to do a tasting, a tour of the champagne cellars, a tour of the vineyards or a champagne lunch. Click here for the website with more information and to book one of the above activities.


Did you know:
Most champagne is made from one of the following grape varieties: Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay. In addition, grapes such as Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris and Arbanne grapes are also available in limited amounts.

In the Côte des Bar, the majority of the grapes are Pinot Noir. More than 80 percent is even Pinot Noir. However, there are also some champagne houses in this region that make champagne from only the Pinot Blanc grapes. Very unique!


2. Michel Falmet (in Rouvres-les Vignes)

This small family business consisting of the couple Corinne and Laurent took over this old champagne house in 2004 from Corinne’s father, Michel Falmet. Since then, many modernizations have been carried out and more than 25,000 bottles of champagne are produced each year! We found the champagne delicious and very mildly priced! Perfect if your budget is also slightly less!

Nowadays you can also take a tour of the company with Corinne and Laurent and then taste some champagnes. However, keep in mind that the working language is mainly French. Making contact with Corinne and Laurent in advance is essential and can be done through their website.Landscape France Champagne Region

3. Nicolo et Paradis (in Arsonval and Colombey-le-sec)

The young couple behind Nicolo et Paradis, Agnes and David Nicolo has given a completely different meaning to the champagne process. Not only do they make champagne ( the champagne house is called Nicolo et Paradis), they also brew beer according to the champagne production process! That is innovative again! The beer brand they founded in 2018 is called Bulle de Paradis and has already won several awards.

In their brasserie in Arsonval you can taste beer on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. It is also possible to take a guided tour through the wine cellars of Nicolo et Paradis and have a free champagne tasting here. Please contact Agnes and David in advance through their website. For more information about Bulles de Paradis, the beer brand they carry, click here.Champagne bottles


Are you not going to the south but to the northern Champagne region? Read all about our favourite champagne houses around Reims and Épernay here!


4. Christian Peligri (Colombey-les-deux-Eglises)

The Christian Peligri family business was part of the Peligri family when Sylvia and Christian Peligri took over in 1980. The third generation of Peligri is currently being prepared with three daughters who all study and work in the wine industry! Even though the champagne house is a real family business, they produce over 75,000 bottles each year!

Christian Peligri is located in the pleasant village of Colombey-les-deux-Eglises and is definitely worth a visit. There are guided tours of the company and a tasting is also possible. Also very nice, the champagne is mildly priced at Champagne Peligri. You already have a bottle of champagne from 7 euros! It is wise to make an appointment in advance via their website.Champagne houses in France

5. Champagne Drappier (Urville)

Champagne Drappier is one of the few larger champagne houses with international allure in Aube en Champagne. Are you looking for a chic champagne house with champagnes that are known all over the world? Then make an appointment at this champagne house. This is also a champagne house with a lot of history. For example, Drappier wine cellars were built in the 12th century AD, and the family business was created in 1808 when Michel Drappier founded it.

Would you like to visit Champagne Drappier and taste their champagnes? This is only possible by appointment. Click here to get in touch via their website.

Tip: also nice if you are in the area, visit the Clairvaux Abbey (12 kilometres away), a beautiful monastery from the 12th century AD. The monastery even shares a history with Champagne Drappier!Vinyards france region


Fun activities in the Côte des Bar or Aube en Champagne

In addition to visiting the champagne houses and vineyards, there are other fun things to do in the southern champagne region. Below is a summary of what to do in and around Côte des Bar!

1. Just outside the Côte des Bar: the beautiful old town of Troyes

Troyes is located just outside the Côte des Bar, it is a place that you should not miss. With the historic old centre, the cathedral, basilica and beautiful church, it is a very attractive place. You can also eat and drink in star restaurants or cosy cafes and sleep in a beautiful hotel such as Hotel La Maison de Rhodes & Spa.

2. Visit the beautiful village of Colombey-Les-Deux-Eglises

This small village just breathes the French atmosphere. Colombey-Les-Deux-Eglises is located on a hill surrounded by rolling champagne fields, forests and rivers. The cute houses are made of light limestone with a typical Mairie (town hall) and a beautiful church in the middle of the village.Villages champagne region

Charles de Gaulle in Colombey-Les-Deux-Eglises

Well worth a visit is the memorial site of Charles de Gaulle, which is at the very top of the hill. Charles de Gaulle had a country house in Côte des Bar and spent most of his time here during his last years of life. The memorial is characterized by a giant double cross (the cross of Lorraine) symbolizing the “Order of Liberation” in France, which Charles de Gaulle was the leader of. Click here for more information about Charles de Gaulle’s Memorial and entrance fees. You can also visit the old house of Charles de Gaulle, which is located just outside Collombey-Les-Deux-Eglises. Click here for more information.Museum Charles De Gaulle

Eating out in Collombey-Les-Deux-Eglises

Does walking around and taking in history make you hungry? Then step inside at Maison & Tartine. Not only is this a very cute hotel with several beautiful rooms. You can also order simple but tasty dishes here.

Looking for a chic restaurant? Then go for a dish at hotel Hostellerie La Montagne. This chic restaurant/hotel currently has two Michelin stars.

Côte des Bar fact: did you know that the truffle (not chocolate, the mushroom) comes from this area? We have eaten the most delicious dishes with truffle several times!Best cafe and restaurants in the champagne regeion France

3. Cycling, mountain biking or hiking in the area

The area surrounding the Côte des Bar consists of a hilly landscape full of forests, rivers and lakes. Perfect for cycling through the vineyards, mountain biking in the woods or walking from village to village. Sweating that alcohol out!

4. Visit the French Saturday morning market

A lively market takes place every Saturday morning in the villages of Bar-Sur-Aube and Chamont. Fresh fruit and vegetables, tasty sausages, French cheeses and local delicacies can be found here in abundance. Perfect for a Saturday morning breakfast.

Are antiques and flea market really your thing? Then head to the sleepy village of Chateauvilain. Here you will find Castel-Broc a shop full of antiques and trinkets.Charlotte plans a trip France Champagne Area

5. Relax by the lakes in the national park la Foret D’orient.

La Foret D’orient National Park is located in the heart of Aube en Champagne. This nature park, created in 1970, is over 80,000 hectares in size and has more than 70 different lakes and ponds. The three best known are Lac d’Orient, Lac du Temple and Lax Amance. Several beaches have been created at Lac d’Orient and here you can enjoy sunbathing swimming and sailing. Lac du Temple is suitable for sport fishing and on Lac Amance you can do water sports such as water skiing.

There is also a wildlife park in the Forêt d’Orient nature park, called Faunce de la Forêt d’Orient. With a guide, you can visit this to spot birds, see wild horses, moose and sometimes even wild boars.Parc Naturel Régional de la Forêt dOrient


Nice hotels in Cote des Bar (Bar-Sur-Aube)

The three hotels below are all centrally located in Bar-Sur-Aube in the pleasant village of Colombey-Les-Deux-Eglises. Would you rather stay in Troyes? Then click here.

Maison & Tartine

Maison Tartine guest house champagne

Cozy chalets, lodges, apartments and rooms that are fully equipped. This hotel is centrally located in Colombey-Les-Deux-Eglises. You sleep here from €70.

More information

Hotel La Grange du Relais

Logis Hotel La grange Du Relais Cote des bar

This hotel is located in a former coach house. It has a nice swimming pool to cool off. The hotel is within walking distance of the center. You sleep here from €75.

More information

Hostellerie de la Montagne
d’Huits 

Hostellerie La Montagne Champagne

This beautiful luxury hotel has a two-star restaurant and beautiful rooms. Look at that roll top bath! You will sleep in a royal way from €140 per room.

More information

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