Moët & Chandon Gets Ready to Toast the Olympics With Paris Champagne Pop-up

Moët & Chandon has joined forces with Michelin-starred chef Yannick Alléno and fashion designer Charles de Vilmorin to ring in the Paris 2024 Olympic Games with a summer pop-up.

A finalist of the 2021 edition of the LVMH Prize for Young Designers, de Vilmorin designed the colorful decor for Moët in Paris by Allénos, ranging from the bar and restaurant’s frescoes to the logo, tableware and staff uniforms.

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Alléno, a longtime ambassador of the Champagne-maker, has devised a menu designed to appeal to a broad range of tastes, with dishes ranging from duck foie gras terrine to vegetable curry, and desserts including chocolate fondant and cherry clafoutis.

Moët & Chandon cellar master Benoît Gouez is in charge of the drinks menu. The venue is part of a push by the LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton-owned brand to create experiences and appeal to a new generation of consumers.

A bottle of Moët & Chandon Impérial Champagne at the Moët in Paris pop-up
A bottle of Moët & Chandon Impérial Champagne at the Moët in Paris pop-up.

“It’s the perfect occasion to attract probably a consumer that has not experienced Champagne yet, or is new to the category,” says Sibylle Scherer, who took over as chief executive officer of Moët & Chandon in July.

“Hopefully, we make people fall in love with our maison and the passion we have for the product, but also our passion for welcoming people,” she adds.

It marks the first time that de Vilmorin, who shot to fame during the pandemic, has applied his creative touch to a hospitality venue.

He was inspired by a visit to the Château de Saran, Moët & Chandon’s stately home in the vineyards of the Champagne region, for his nature-inspired drawings that incorporate birds and butterflies.

“They wanted to create a space that reflects the brand’s identity but is also quite innovative — something fresh and a little light,” says the designer, known for his swirly, fantastical sketches. “I felt really free and they allowed me to do what I liked.”

The Moët in Paris by Allénos pop-up designed by Charles de Vilmorin
The Moët in Paris by Allénos pop-up designed by Charles de Vilmorin.

LVMH, which also owns Dom Pérignon, Veuve Clicquot and Ruinart, is a premium partner of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, which kick off on July 26. Although French law bans the sale of alcohol inside stadiums, the bubbly is expected to flow in hospitality areas.

Moët & Chandon is no stranger to fashion collaborations, having created limited-edition bottles with the likes of Yoon Ahn, Virgil Abloh and Public School. But this is its most ambitious project to date with a fashion designer, signaling a new strategy for the house.

“Fashion should and will play an integral role for us in the future, be it in creating experiences, collaborating together on products or collaborating with creative talent such as photographers,” says Isabel May, chief marketing officer at Moët & Chandon.

“It is a part of us as a maison and we will strengthen that even more going forward,” adds the executive, who joined the company from German online retailer Mytheresa in April.

Located in the Beaupassage pedestrian alley just steps from Saint-Germain-des-Prés, Moët in Paris sits next to a bakery by Thierry Marx and a café by Pierre Hermé — both stars of French cuisine.

Moët & Chandon cellar master Benoît Gouez and French chef Yannick Alléno
Benoît Gouez and Yannick Alléno

The space was previously home to Burger Père et Fils par Alléno, a concept the chef founded with his son Antoine, who was killed tragically in a hit-and-run accident in 2022.

“It’s symbolic in a way. It’s my son’s restaurant and we want to celebrate life,” Alléno says. “He was gone before he could really see his project take off, so we’re doing everything we can for this place to be as lively as possible.”

Moët in Paris aims to welcome tourists and locals, with weekly events including tastings, weekend brunches, DJ sets, surprise celebrity appearances and live music sessions. It will also host the after party for de Vilmorin’s show during Paris Couture Week.

While some restaurants may close during the Olympic Games due to logistical issues, Alléno believes the sporting event represents a fantastic opportunity for the city. “We’re very fortunate this is happening in Paris and we want to celebrate the moment with French greatness and creativity,” he says.

“A lot of people are coming from around the world. We have to take good care of them while they’re here,” he adds. “This event is all about promoting friendship.”

That’s why he’s made the menu accessible, both in terms of prices and dishes.

“We’re making lollilops like the ice lollies we used to eat as kids, but with Champagne, a celery extract and elderflower,” he says.

“I even made an ‘oeuf frou fou.’ It’s a jellied egg with a vegetable macédoine. It’s the sort of old-time recipe you don’t get anymore and that we’re bringing back because it’s good and it’s Paris,” he adds.

De Vilmorin, who dreams of launching a line of homewares one day, has relished the opportunity to learn more about fine dining from Alléno, who runs prestigious restaurants including the Pavillon Ledoyen in Paris.

French fashion designer Charles de Vilmorin poses in the Moët in Paris by Allénos pop-up
Charles de Vilmorin

“I’m not very comfortable in restaurants where everything is very stuffy,” he says. “The menu here is really rooted in traditional French bistro cooking, and I loved his approach.”

Despite his down-to-earth manner, Alléno takes a highly scientific approach to his profession.

His Modern Cuisine culinary movement is based on two key pillars: sauces and fermentation. Both are based on cooking food at the right temperature to bring flavors to the fore, while his patented extraction technique uses vacuum and cryo-extraction instead of heat.

He’s used his expertise to create his own brand of low-sugar chocolate. Alléno is pleased to report that Champagne-makers have also dialed down the sweetness in recent years.

“They used to add 15 grams of sugar per liter. That’s huge. These days, there’s very little added sugar. It’s a much more refreshing drink,” he says.

The courtyard of the Moët in Paris by Allénos pop-up restaurant
The courtyard of the Moët in Paris by Allénos pop-up restaurant.

Alléno believes his extractions can even given athletes an edge heading into the Olympics. He recently started working with Brazilian fencer Nathalie Moellhausen on a special diet as she prepares to compete for Brazil at the Paris Games.

“It seems to be working really well, according to her team and her nutritionists,” he reports. “This is just the beginning, but I think our culinary expertise holds the key to improving the food of tomorrow.”

The pop-up will remain open until the Champagne harvest begins, officially signaling the end of summer, Moët & Chandon’s Scherer says. She’s seen good response to the brand’s Champagne bars at department stores Harrods in London and KaDeWe in Berlin, and is mulling further experiences like Moët in Paris.

“If it is successful for us, I think it can travel,” she says. “We want to bring our products closer, not just by selling a bottle but really showcasing our hospitality as well.”

Cushions designed by Charles de Vilmorin at the Moët in Paris by Allénos pop-up
Cushions designed by Charles de Vilmorin at the Moët in Paris by Allénos pop-up.

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