Where Dijon is a center for Burgundy's red wine production (and that of mustard), Epernay is the main entrepot for the wines of the Champagne region. Visitors from all over the world come to this small town to buy champagne and see how it is bottled. As it is the center for champagne production, its economy and tourism largely revolve around sparkling wines.
Like most other metropolitan areas in France, Epernay can trace its history to the last days of Rome. Indeed, the town is replete with the obligatory 16th-century church and Old Quarter; however, these quaint relics of long-gone eras have been somewhat overshadowed by a cheerily modern streak. This doesn't mean that the town's charm has disappeared under a bunch of apartments and malls; rather, Epernay's appeal spreads outside its limits to the surrounding countryside, where the wealthy wine merchants and champagne producers keep impressive maisons.
Also spread throughout the countryside are the region's many wineries, most of which offer tours and tastings. Driving around centuries-old vineyards is awe-inspiring in itself, and many producers offer tours of the champagne caves. Mined for chalk during Roman times, these caves were later found to be perfect for storing the effervescent wines that made the region famous.