Travel

Take your pick in Courchevel, Chamonix, Sainte-Foy, Megève, and Val Thorens

Poppy Whatmore's Champagne Days: 9.42 a.m., 2012

Art review: Antechamber, Collyer Bristow Solicitors & Gallery, London

It’s a surreal experience to walk into a solicitors office near Chancery Lane and find a gallery filled with contemporary art trying to provoke, as contemporary art tends to do.

Boyd Tonkin: Those scary, monstrous feminazis - they still dare to run a book prize

A lot of Pinot Grigio has passed under the bridge since, at a small-scale and low-key event, I saw Helen Dunmore receive the inaugural Orange Prize for fiction in 1996. Dunmore, who won for the outstanding A Spell of Winter, goes from strength to strength.

Claissical review: Ariadne auf Naxos - You know what will see off Jerry? A jolly old sing-song

First seen as part of a 1912 double bill, Ariadne auf Naxos was revised and reshaped as Europe plunged into the carnage of the First World War. Strauss was profoundly relieved when his son, Franz, was declared unfit for military service. But his librettist, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, had already served as a reservist when the now familiar version of their backstage comedy on high and low art premiered in Vienna in 1916, four days after the assassination of the prime minister in the dining room of a hotel a few minutes' walk from the opera house.

Undermine Legal Aid and you put our entire justice system at risk

Now top legal talent will find the prospect of working in criminal courts less attractive

You can stuff your exclusive 'thin' and 'beautiful' club, Abercrombie and Fitch - I don't want to join

I find your garments Sloaney, uninspiring, overpriced and generally far, FAR too beige

Open Jaw

Where readers write back

Richard Hughes and Toronado win the Craven yesterday

Toronado blows open betting for 2,000 Guineas

This really has been a blasted Heath over the past couple of days, but today the gale was rendered incarnate by a colt named Toronado. His runaway success in the last of its Classic trials crowned a pleasing revival in the significance of this meeting, Hot Snap and Garswood having won their own rehearsals impressively the previous day. But while both arguably owed something to the shelter they found from fierce gusts across the track, Toronado went gliding clear of what had become a tailwind – and blew apart the betting on the Qipco 2,000 Guineas. Though Dawn Approach remains favourite, Toronado is no better than 4-1 to beat him back here in a fortnight.

Krug: he determined the blend of each champagne

Henri Krug: Winemaker who kept his family in the vanguard of champagne production

With his younger brother Rémi, Henri Krug was the fifth generation of the family to lead the house that makes the consistently best champagne. Achieving this while at the same time being responsive to fashion – goals that were sometimes almost contradictory – was his great contribution to Krug.

Man About Town: From champagne in Paris to fashion at Aintree to... champagne in London

In the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the alien Ford Prefect describes hyperspace travel to earthling Arthur Dent as “unpleasantly like being drunk”. When Arthur asks what’s so bad about being drunk, Ford replies: “You ask a glass of water.”

Man about town: In France, champagne is just a drink - not a marker of class

A trip to the Krug celebration showed another side of the luxury tipple

Chuka Umunna, Shadow business secretary

Page 3 Profile: Chuka Umunna, Shadow business secretary

The next leader of the Labour party?

Labour MP Chuka Umunna apologises for comments on elite social network saying London's nightclubs are 'full of trash'

A senior Labour MP has apologised for any offence caused by a complaint that London's nightclubs were “full of trash”.

Rapper Rick Ross denies his music condones rape

'It sends message that raping women is cool' - Sportswear brand Reebok criticised over ties with rapper Rick Ross

Reebok face protests from women’s rights activists over their ties with rapper Rick Ross, a rapper who appears to boast about date rape in his latest single.

Howard Jacobson and Michael Frayn are among the competitors for this year's Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction

Howard Jacobson and Michael Frayn in the running for Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction

The winner will have a pig named after their work

Win an epicurean two-night spa break in a luxury York country house hotel worth nearly £800

Middlethorpe Hall and Spa is a York institution: a gorgeous red-brick William and Mary country house, built in 1699 and lovingly refurbished into a sumptuous, historic hotel. 

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

The secret CIA Starbucks

The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

One million Britons using food banks

Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

How to run a restaurant

As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
10 best tote bags

Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

Paul Scholes column

I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...