A significant challenge for the Old Champagne Glass Company is how to acquire many hundreds of sets of champagne glasses every year – particularly the ones we really want.
We are very lucky in that we have established contacts in both France and Belgium who bring crystal over for us. Not just champagnes but also wine glasses and decanters. French crystal presents a particular challenge because so little of it was signed before the second world war and some of the finest, most desirable glass ever made pre-dates this time. Signed (with an etch mark) objects are obviously easy to identify but we often only know the older pieces when we actually see and touch them.
An example would be these Baccarat Epron champagne coupes that were probably made 1900-1920. We got these almost in the shadow of the Chateau Amboise in the Loire Valley. We thought they were Baccarat and it turned out they were.
It’s obviously fun but a real logistical challenge and the reality is that a lot of luck is involved. A promising town can turn up nothing at all – although an attractive bar can usually be relied on.
Waiting for the ferry at St Malo. Ok, we should probably get a van.