Calais Vins and sister outlet Franglais Vins are two of the best places to sample your selection before buying
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A step up from the bargain outlets, these classy stores are the joint venture of the friendly and and knowledgeable Pont and Vermisse families, who employ helpful staff who really know their stuff. At the large temperature-controlled tasting bar around 30 wines are regularly available. The prices are competitive on top-end bottles as well as more ordinary stock. There is also a variety of rum, whisky and beers from Northern France as well as regular special offers on buying in bulk. It is also worth asking about the Petits Frères scheme, which sources vintages from small, owner-run vineyards, for less expensive and more unusual alternatives to the big brand names.
Last December, a brand new Fromagerie opened at their site on the outskirts of Calais, alongside their existing bakery, Pain & Levain. This new cheese store has been opened under the brand of Philippe Olivier, one the most respected cheese makers in Northern France.
The Fromagerie is managed and run by Marc Facchinetti, who has spent the past five years developing his craft under the watchful eye of Philippe Olivier. Marc’s passion for cheese started when he worked for many years in some of France’s leading Michelin star Restaurants.
“I’ve always wanted to set-up my own Fromagerie, and with the backing of Calais Vins and Philippe Olivier, I am very excited about this opportunity. We aim to appeal to local people and customers from the UK with our wide range of excellent regional cheeses, plus other varieties from further afield”, says Marc.
Calais Vins owner, Jerome Pont says, “We see the opening of this new cheese store as a natural progression for our wine and bakery businesses. We are delighted to be associated with the brand of Philippe Olivier. We now have the perfect combination all on one site, which will definitely appeal to our existing customers and hopefully attract some new ones too”.
The on-site bakery, “Pain et Levain” opened last year and has proved an instant success. Serving-up freshly baked bread, baguettes, croissants, pain au chocolat and an assortment of delicious French pastries, plus freshly made sandwiches, Panini and salads, the bakery offers a great choice for eat-in snacks or takeaway food. The purpose-built unit, which sits alongside the existing wine store, can seat up to 42 in the bistro area, where freshly brewed coffee is served with a range of teas, cold drinks or a glass of wine from the wine store next door, if you prefer!
Calais Vins has been pleasing both local and British customers with a wide range of excellent wines, beers and spirits for over 10 years. With 2000 to choose from, all personally selected by the Calais Vins wine team, there is bound to be something to suit all tastes. Just to be sure, there’s a tasting bar where you can try before you buy and with English speaking staff on-hand to help you make the right selection, it really couldn’t be easier.
For those on the move, or any last minute purchases, there’s a 24-hour on-site cash point.
Pain & Levain is open every day from 7.30am to 7.30pm.
Calais Vins is open: Monday-Saturday 9am – 7pm and Sunday 10am – 7pm
Opening times for the Fromagerie are:
Tuesday to Friday 9.30am-1.00pm and 2.30pm-7.30pm
Closed on Mondays
Pre-ordering cheese online is available, for collection on Sunday afternoon and all day Monday from Pain & Levain (when the Fromagerie is not open)
All three stores can be found and can be found just off the A16 Motorway on the outskirts of Calais at Junction 44 (Calais St.Pierre).
More information can be found at www.wine-calais.co.uk/ or by calling 00 33 3 21 36 40 40
Pre-ordering is possible on our website: www.wine-calais.co.uk/ with more than 400 products to choose from.