The Widow Clicquot
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The Widow Clicquot : The Story of a Champagne Empire and the Woman Who Ruled it

By (author) Tilar J. Mazzeo

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Veuve Clicquot champagne epitomizes glamour and style, with tribute paid everywhere from Lord Byron to Casablanca. But who was this young widow - the 'Veuve' - Clicquot, whose champagne sparkled at the courts of France, Britain, and Russia, and how did she rise to celebrity and fortune? Newly widowed, she assumed the reins of the fledgling wine business she and her husband started, steering it through huge political and financial reversals to succeed as a single woman in a man's world. Visitors flocked to see this cultural icon and taste the vintages she imbued with magic.

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  • Paperback | 304 pages
  • 134 x 202 x 22mm | 220g
  • 15 Oct 2009
  • HarperCollins Publishers Inc
  • HarperBusiness
  • New York
  • English
  • black & white illustrations, maps
  • 0061288586
  • 9780061288586
  • 9,814

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Author Information

Tilar J. Mazzeo is the author of numerous works of cultural history and biography, including the New York Times bestselling The Widow Clicquot, The Secret of Chanel No. 5, and nearly two dozen other books, articles, essays, and reviews on wine, travel, and the history of luxury. The Clara C. Piper Associate Professor of English at Colby College, she divides her time between coastal Maine, New York City, and Vancouver Island, British Columbia.

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Review quote

"Joan of Arc and Madame Clicquot were the two women heroes I knew when growing up in France. What a gift to have this new, well-researched biography of one of the world's first 'legitimate' businesswoman, our contemporary as a global business leader." -- Mireille Guiliano, author of the New York Times #1 bestseller, French Women Don't Get Fat "The Widow Clicquot is someone we should all know about... Long a shadowy, legend-obscured figure, in Tilar Mazzeo's agile hands the widow sheds her weeds and takes form before our eyes as a distinctly modern entrepreneur...The result is narrative history that fizzes with life and feeling." -- Benjamin Wallace, author of the New York Times bestseller, The Billionaire's Vinegar "Told in a light and graceful style that is just right for its subject... [I]t's a fascinating trip, made even more so by Ms. Mazzeo's charming cameo appearances as a kind of tour guide... This example of Barbe-Nicole's voice is exceptional...an intoxicating business biography." -- Julia Flynn Siler, The Wall Street Journal "The Widow Clicquot, Tilar J. Mazzeo's sweeping oenobiography of Barbe-Nicole Clicquot Ponsardin, is the story of a woman who was a smashing success long before anyone conceptualized the glass ceiling." -- New York Times Book Review "Mazzeo's resulting book is an enticing stew of biography and history." -- USA Today "If you like champagne, "The Widow Clicquot" by Tilar J. Mazzeo is definitely worth a drink." -- Associated Press "Tilar J. Mazzeo's informed and enlightening biography of Madame Clicquot, the widow and, more important, the businesswoman, retrieves her vintage story as if looking for a rare bottle in one of the Champagne region's deepest caves." -- Newsday "This book is full of fascinating morsels of information." -- Canberra Times The Widow Clicquot is a miraculous feat of organization, one worthy of a doctoral thesis... [I]n its moments of action, this is actually a gripping story. And while the book appears to be a feminist history/business biography, it's also the appealing story of the author's odyssey. -- Austin Chronicle "Mazzeo's tale moves swiftly through Barbe-Nicole's many accomplishments, including her method for storing bottles nose-down--an innovation that allowed the second fermentation detritus to be cleared efficiently, setting her far ahead of her competitors." -- Los Angeles Times

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