When we arrived at Neo Cafe & Eatery to finish the last touches for our Vintage Billecart-Salmon Champagne Masterclass, we knew instantly that we had made the right decision in choosing this venue for the occasion.

Heading up the escalator of Queen Street’s Queen’s Arcade, we were lead to the bright and spacious restaurant with all doors wide open to the terrace. We noticed the decor and ambience of elegance without being over powering or old fashioned – a perfect match to the Champagne we were about to taste.

Our account manager Matt Haussrer arrived with Sebastien Papin, Billecart-Salmon’s Asia Pacific Ambassador, followed by the guests who were all very much looking forward to the extra special Champagne afternoon.

The diversity of guests, from private to representatives of restaurants, hotels and corporate created an incredible atmosphere.

When all the guests sat down, they were given the 200th Anniversary brochure, and we introduced Sebastien to them all. To the guests pleasure, our staff started filling up the glasses.

Sebastien began his presentation with the beautiful and well known Brut Rosé, followed by the aperitif style 2007 Extra Brut and then the NV Premier Cru Sous Bois.

After a short 5 minute break, whilst everybody talked about the Champagne we had just enjoyed, Sebastien carried on introducing the wine dedicated to the original winemaker and brother of Elisabeth Salmon: 2006 Cuvée Louis Blanc de Blancs.

He then introduced the “married couple” wines dedicated to Elisabeth Salmon and Nicolas Billecart, whose romance was the beginning of this Champagne house’s story: 2002 Cuvèe Nicolas François along side 2006 Cuvèe Elisabeth Rosè.

The canapès thoughtfully created by Neo were superb and perfectly matched to each Champagne.

The order forms were given to each guest which allowed us to join them and relive the wonders of these wines.

The NV Premier Cru Sous Bois, the NV Blanc de Blancs and the Cuvèe Nicolas François were the top scorers and favourites of the delightful afternoon.