To briefly recap our progress with the Veuve Clicquot recipe this week, we added one part design on Tuesday, one part ambiance on Wednesday, and one part expertise on Thursday. Today, there’s one last ingredient to add, and we’re going to be pouring a little bit more of this one into the mix than usual. The reason the recipe calls for two parts family is that the Veuve Clicquot family is the glue that holds the rest of the dish together.

The strength of the VC family not only serves to keep the internal workings of the brand humming along, but it’s also a strong, effective, and natural customer draw — I think it’s the authenticity people perceive when they feel a strong sense of family associated with a brand. It was certainly what made me feel relaxed, welcomed, and inspired during my days in France — a refreshing, tradition-bound experience amongst the hoards of Johnny-come-lately brands out there these days.

And as a special bonus today, I’ve put together this photo/video montage of my Veuve Clicquot experience. In all honesty, it was inspired by my new, adopted family. I hope you all enjoy watching. (I recommend viewing the montage in high quality on youtube )

And what "family" post would be complete with out a few family photos? You'll find several after the jump"¦

Lounging in the living room at the Verzy Mansion for a pre-lunch aperitif. What’s better to prime the pumps for a champagne-filled lunch than, well, champagne?

Lunch in the dining room at the Verzy Mansion. To think… a couple hundred years ago, Madame Clicquot was doing the same…

Our final dinner together (for the time being at least) in the Pavillon, a stone building adjacent to the VC headquarters that was constructed in, I believe, 1560…

Well, folks, the recipe is all finished, so I hope you’ve enjoyed the process of putting it together this week!

photos courtesy of Xavier Lavictoire