Lummi Island Wine Tasting October 29 ’11 “Back from France…sort of”
Well, we’re back. Sort of. Still trying to integrate all the experiences. If Italy was a soft series of rich dioramas, France was more of a kaleidoscope made up of an endless maze of traffic roundabouts, old villages with labyrinths of narrow streets, and a vast array of micro-regions, each with its own individual character. We’ll have more to say about these things later on. For now, we just want to say it’s good to be home, and we’re looking forward to seeing you this weekend, Friday 4-7pm and Saturday from 2-6.
One of the cornerstones of every French village is the boulangerie, where you grab your morning baguette or croissants, fresh from the oven. Here’s a photo we took outside one:
It gives you strength and balance
Your bread is prepared
Before you with passion …
Your Boulanger kneads and fashions
With authentic gestures
Then he lets it sit to grow long
To give it its full flavor
It smells good the bread of your Artisan Boulanger!
This week’s wines:
Calera Chardonnay 08 California WA90pts $15
Offers abundant notes of honeysuckle, orange marmalade, white currants, and tropical fruits. Crisp, elegant, mid-weight, and revealing no evidence of its wood aging.
Vinosia Aglianico 08 Italy $12
Aglianico 100%; Deep garnet-purple colour. Raisin, blueberry and underbrush aromas. Some dried rose petals and spice. Crisp acidity and a medium body, velvety tannins, long finish. Addictive!
Townshend Red Table Washington $12
Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah blend; aromas of black cherry, blackberry, strawberry, cedar and a hint of orange zest fill your glass and then your mouth with lingering pepper & tobacco . A definite winner as weather turns colder.
Cougar Crest Dedication 4 ‘07 Washington $19
44% Syrah, 32% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. Luch, ripe plums, red currants, black cherries, and a hint of dried roses and herbs on the nose are balanced by acidity and tannins that are smooth and graceful, not overbearing. Rich on the palate and long on the finish–a favorite around here.
France trip October ’11 Part I: “Third Exit at the Roundabout”
Well, here we are in France, and so far our lodgings have been comfy, the scenery delightful, the wine ubiquitous and for the most part very good. Vineyards are everywhere. So are traffic circles, which replace all major and most minor intersections. We have a GPS that can’t tell the difference between a major road and a cowpath (hence our title, above). And access to wifi (“wee-fee”) has been intermittent, with few opportunities to post here for you.
We are continually thankful for Ryan’s great French class the last couple of months at the wine shop; it has been invaluable in meeting the everyday conversational challenges that continually arise. Bien fait, Monsieur! We hope you are all joining him at the wine shop Fridays and Saturdays while we are gone!
As I write this we are finishing three days at a sort of B&B near Sommieres that is a restored old stone farmhouse and outbuildings surrounded by beautiful fields of garrigue. (see link; the photo above is the vineyard at the Bertrand Stehelin winery in Gigondas, where we had a wonderful tour and degustation of his delightful wines.)
The last couple of days we have toured and tasted wine in a small region called Pic St. Loup, for which I have long had a particular fondness…and it turns out to be beautiful in many ways as well—we could easily spend a week or two right here, but alas, tomorrow we are off for a week in Lagrasse, visiting the wine regions of Corbieres, Minervois, and St. Chinian, all in the Languedoc region.
Stay tuned, mes amis!
Lummi Island Wine Tasting Oct 8 ’11
Just a note to let you all know that despite the fact that we are in France at the moment, notre ami Ryan will be taking over the reins at the wine shop while we are gone. So stop by and enjoy the fun on Friday from 4-7 and Saturday from 2-6 as usual.
Watch for more posts from France…at the moment internet access is very limited. Stay tuned!