girlmeetsglass podcast Paris tips 

Tanisha Townsend decided to move to Paris 4 years ago after regularly passing through the city en route to the world’s most famous vineyards. In fact, it was about 2 years ago at the Printemps de Champagne Bouzy Rouge tasting in Reims that I saw (who we shall now refer to as) GirlMeetsGlass chirpily speaking to her web followers on Snapchat.

So, it was a great pleasure to meet up again at Freddy’s Wine Bar in Saint Germain to chat about the wine world from the perspective of an American in Paris. Insightful and fun, GirlMeetsGlass is the English speakers anchor lady in the beating heart of the French capital. 

Secret Sommelier: Describe your wine activities here, like a day or week in the life…

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GirlMeetsGlass: Okay, so an overview of all the things I do in wine in Paris. I do day trips to Champagne, which I enjoy doing. We have a private driver that comes to pick the tasters up from their hotel, or their apartment, then whisks them away to Champagne. We do a tasting for the day, lunch, we see Notre Dam, perhaps we go to Haut Villiers where Dom Perignon is buried. We taste a lot of champagne. I talk them through the different regions in Champagne, the grapes, and that kind of thing. 

I also do tours in Paris, visiting different wine bars. One of my favourites is where we are right now and is actually a stop on my tours. We have a glass of wine and we talk about the French wine regions.

People really want to know… their main question is what are the grapes and what is the region? If they see a bottle that says Bordeaux, is this a grape, is this a region; what does it mean?

I also have a podcast called GirlMeetsGlass. So we have a good few activities that we have put together that relate to wine and food.

Secret Sommelier: What are your favourite regions and wines for various occasions?

GirlMeetsGlass: Of course I’ll start with Champagne. People think of champagne as just for special occasions, which is fine. It’s good for graduation, or for a wedding, but it is also good for a Tuesday, or for a Friday… it’s perfect for that!

I am also really getting into wines from the Languedoc region, so red wines from there. I need to start getting back into white wines as the seasons are changing now but I’m doing a lot of red wines from Languedoc, since it is so vast and tastes so different from place to place.

Watch the interview with @GirlMeetsGlass

Secret Sommelier: Can you sum up Paris bar culture as it is today in a few sentences?

GirlMeetsGlass: I am actually really amazed. I am at bars often and, you know, I want to get a glass of wine, and I see a lot of other people ordering beer. I was at a wine bar a few weeks ago and I got myself a glass of wine, and as more and more people came, they were all ordering beer. So beer is a very popular thing for people to order here, and not wine, like you’d think.

Also, cocktails are definitely in, and craft cocktails are making a big appearance here. You have a lot more craft cocktail bars…

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Secret Sommelier: Craft cocktails?

GirlMeetsGlass: By craft, I mean fresh ingredients. Not those pre-mixed Margherita’s, or pre-mixed Daiquiris, or things like that. They are being more creative with the ingredients that they use in the drink, making things you can’t make at home. Like using fresh lemongrass and making their own tinctures, and things like that. These are some of the things I like.

Secret Sommelier: Craft beer is massive in London. Craft beer, small breweries…

GirlMeetsGlass: I’m surprised that it is like that here because they have so much wine, but…

Secret Sommelier: Do you think it is a generational thing?

GirlMeetsGlass: That is what I am thinking because a lot of those drinking beer are much younger. Yeah, it is like a kind of generation thing… just a little generation under me! [Laughs]

Secret Sommelier: What's your go-to wine right now when you are “off-duty”?

GirlMeetsGlass: It’s probably a red and it is probably from the Rhone Valley or Languedoc. I can’t get more specific than that because wine lists vary so much from wine bar to wine bar. I like to look at the list and then maybe there is a part of that region that I haven’t tried their wines before, so I’ll try that. 

If the waiter or sommelier would like to suggest something like “Oh this Saint Joseph is really good. You should try it!” Okay, let’s do that! I am up for suggestions.

Secret Sommelier: So you are pretty flexible?

GirlMeetsGlass: I’m pretty flexible. I have an idea about what I want to drink. Like right now, I want it a little more bold, a little more spicy, so that is why I am going for those regions but as the weather starts to warm up, I’ll change that. I’ll want some lighter reds, some crisper whites, a little more acid, a little more fresh fruits, fresh citrus fruit flavours.

Secret Sommelier: What will we get when we subscribe to the GirlMeetsGlass podcast?

GirlMeetsGlass: First of all you are going to get Amazingness! The first season is all about Champagne. We are just really tackling champagne because most people don’t even think it is a wine. Champagne is a wine. It is not just for special occasions. 

We are tackling what exactly it is, the region itself, the grapes, where do the bubbles come from? And women in Champagne because it is ‘Women’s History’ month this March. So you’ll get all about Champagne in the first season.

So that is GirlMeetsGlass, downloadable everywhere you can listen to your podcast.

Secret Sommelier: Brilliant! Thank you very much, it’s been great to see you again!

GirlMeetsGlass: Thank you.. you too!

Subscribe to the Girl Meets Glass podcast here.


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Tanisha Townsend decided to move to Paris 4 years ago after regularly passing through the city en route to the world’s most famous vineyards. In fact, it was about 2 years ago at the Printemps de Champagne Bouzy Rouge tasting in Reims that I saw (who we shall now refer to as) GirlMeetsGlass chirpily speaking to her web followers on Snapchat.


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