This week's guest on In the Drink is Frédéric Panaïotis, chef de Caves at the Champagne House of Ruinart, in Reims, France. As a child, Panaïotis spent much of his time in the small Champagne vineyards of his grandparents, sampling the fruits of their labor. His professional career began with a compulsory training period at the Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne, where he studied the méthode champenoise process in general and wine clarification in particular, including fining, filtration and riddling. Over the years, Panaïotis returned several times to the Comité, subsequently specializing in the interaction of cork and wine, and training the professional panel on different tasting procedures. His winemaking apprenticeship included appointments in France and California. Panaïotis graduated from the Institut National Agronomique Paris-Grignon with a specialization in Viticulture-Oenologie, followed by a degree from the Ecole Supérieure d’Oenologie de Montpellier in 1988. Frédéric Panaïotis joined Champagne Ruinart in 2007 as Chef de Caves. In this position, he has the responsibility of creating the blends, from the non vintages Blanc de Blancs and Rosé to the prestige cuvees of Ruinart, Dom Ruinart and Dom Ruinart Rosé. He also plays a significant role in the communication efforts of Champagne Ruinart, at times travelling extensively to international markets.
"It's great for celebration, great to go with good, great for any moment in your life." [13:00]