|Location:||Métro: Passy. RER: Tour Eiffel-Champs de Mars. Bus: 72.|
All year Tue-Sun 10-18.
Closed 24-DEC, 31-DEC.
Adults EUR 8.90, Children (0-14) free, Seniors EUR 7.50, Students EUR 7.
Groups (15+): Adults EUR 7, Seniors EUR 6.50, Students EUR 6.
|Classification:||Rock Mine Cellar|
|Guided tours:||self guided|
|Address:||Musee Du Vin Paris, Rue des Eaux, 5, square Charles Dickens, 75016 Paris, Tel: +33-1-45256326, Fax: +33-1-40509122. E-mail:|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
|13th cty||start of limestone quarrying.|
|18th cty||end of mining.|
|1950||refurbished and served as the wine cellar for the Eiffel Tour's restaurant.|
|1984||wine museum founded.|
Advertised as a wine museum, this seems to be primarly a way to sell French vine to foreign visitors. Nevertheless the location is of great interest. The museum is owned by the Conseil des Echansons, an association founded in 1954 to protect and promote the best appellations of French terroir. They offer changing archaeological, historical, wine related, and art exhibitions, wine tasting, wine seminars, receptions, and dinners. The 2007 exhibition was The Wine in the Ancient Egypt. The permanent exhibition shows viticulture, wine-making, and finishing the wine.
This are originally medieval limestone quarries, where Calcaire Grossier (coarse limestone) was mined. This limestone is found in the Lutetian layer, named after Paris, Lutece is the Latin name for Paris. This layer is found at 37.8m asl, which is in general below the ground of Paris. As a result the quarries which provided stones for the construction of the French capital were underground. The rocks were mined in a simple but rather safe technique called room and pillar, where only a part of the rock is removed and the rest remains to form huge pillars supporting the ceiling.
In the 19th century the abandoned mines were converted into cellars by the new owners, the Passy Monastery. The Minime brothers were hired for the work, and erected cement and brick walls to bring the tunnels together.
This part of Paris has various springs, which were discovered during Between the 17th and mid 18th century. The name rue des Eaux (street of the waters) is a result of this richness. One of those springs still exists at the entrance to the museum. As a result we suppose the limestone is covered by impermeable chert layers, otherwise the cellars would soon fill with groundwater.
A nice anecdote about the place is told of a trap door in the ceiling of the cellar. Balzac's house was right above, and he used this trap door to escape from his creditors.