Wines news of France IIII !!

Well here I am again on one of my hobbies wines! And getting the habit of it, this might be the beginning of a new series already on its 4th version without counting the many others not numbered over my blog. Hope you enjoy the posts, with moderation but en vino veritas!!

A fun and above all free activity for young holidaymakers in Nouvelle-Aquitaine. The Cité du Vin de Bordeaux has decided to offer to people under 18 free until August 31.

In compliance with the sanitary rules provided for by the coronavirus – including the wearing of a mask from 11 years old , the establishment has announced the possibility for juniors accompanying their parents, upon request at reception, to come and discover its permanent route as well as the Belvedere.

With 3,000 m², the Permanent Route includes nearly ten hours of content from twenty different interactive themes relating to culture and heritage around the theme of the vine in the region and its many vineyards, accompanied by a digital guide to discover the different stories. The terroir table, a tactile table with 50 winemakers from ten regions of the world trusting in their work and anecdotes, the “e-vine” area to learn how professionals select grape varieties, prune vines, take care of their grapes and their harvests or “around the world of vineyards” with the representation of many landscapes are part of the different spaces making up the route. Everything is in place to put yourself in the shoes of a winemaker or a wine merchant. Finally, head to the 8th floor of the establishment to go to the Belvedere which, 35 meters high, offers a 360-degree view of the city and its surroundings and sip organic reason juice. For health reasons, adults are invited to book their tickets online.

More info at La Cité du Vin – 134 Quai de Bacalan 33300 Bordeaux . Open every day from 10h to 19h. More info here: La Cité du Vin Bordeaux

Worth mentioning, the surges of solidarity towards the nursing staff multiplied during confinement and continue beyond. Thus, the Maison Ruinart announced last Friday that it was joining the united and unifying operation “A table, les soignants !” or at the table, the carers!, Launched by chef Arnaud Donckele, chef of the triple-star restaurant La Vague d’Or, at the Hôtel Cheval Blanc Saint-Tropez, supported in particular by LVMH, Cheval Blanc, and the Michelin Guide. Created out of generosity and as a sign of recognition by restaurateurs, this national initiative consists of an invitation to an establishment for each caregiver, accompanied by the person of their choice. During the summer season, the champagne house founded in 1729 offers professionals in the medical world, twenty tables for two , after registering the dedicated platform for two professionals per week to taste the brunch made by Valérie Radou, chef en residence, at Maison Ruinart in Reims. As a sign of recognition, Ruinart has also decided to make a case of bottles of Ruinart’s cuvée R available to partner establishments of the house and participants in the operation to offer a cup to the caregivers present on the premises. More info here: A Table les Soignants info site

The French are crazy about gin. The proof again with Thomas and Charlotte Jourdan, founders of the young brand Malouin’s. They are found in Brittany. In their 4×4 with camouflage interior, they take us to the ramparts of Saint-Malo. Facing a turquoise sea we go, wicker basket in the bend of the elbow, picnic of crustaceans and a loaf of fresh bread. Following star chef Roellinger’s recipe, Thomas pours a centiliter of his gin into an oyster, accompanied by a round of pepper mill and a few drops of lemon. They use juniper, of course, coriander and their flagship ingredient, seaweed, kombu, kelp and sea spaghetti, which is collect by hand on the beach at Rochebonne. Add to that yuzu and orange for balance, and that’s it. A heady iodized scent that makes it a strong alcohol and pure seafood! In 2018, after seven years together at the head of the Bistrot de Louise et Manon and a whole life anchored in Neuilly-sur-Seine (92), near Paris, the duo, as a couple in the city as on the scene, decided to sell the establishment and change of life, the frantic pace becoming difficult to reconcile with two children to raise Among them, the upcoming release of their apple gin, based on apple alcohol, or the opening of the first distillery in Saint-Malo intra- muros. And then, finally, they think about growing their own junipers, and making Malouin’s gin a real product of local crafts. Malouins gin Breton more info here: Malouins Gin St Malo

In the Basque Country, the 39 winegrowers on 50 hectares of the Irouleguy appellation have suffered from the health crisis. Indeed as many but I am drinking Irouleguy right now, so help is on its way! “50% of our activity is based on cafes and restaurants. It therefore found itself nullified for two months due to covid19. We also had a very noticeable drop in mass distribution because people went to entry-level products. Even there, we lost 70% of market share”. From now on, the Irouleguy winery, which produces 500,000 bottles per year and represents 60% of the AOC, focuses on the return of French and even foreign tourists. “The Nordic populations, from Belgium and even higher, are big fans of our wines,” says the director general. Christophe Mazaud, directeur général de la cave coopérative Irouleguy at Saint-Etienne-de-Baïgorry (Pyrénées-Atlantiques). More on the cellars in English here : Cave Irouleguy

Another region hurting even if less is Burgundy. Burgundy wines expect a “decent” decline in sales in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. At the end of April, sales posted a decline of only 2% in volume, and 8% in value. At the end of May, they should have fallen by 12% in exports but by 25 to 30% in France. More than half (56%) of Burgundy wines are exported, the first market being the United States (20% of total exports). Exports came close to a billion euros in 2019. Over the whole year, the drop in sales in value should be between 10% and “15-20%”. Burgundy, with 3,659 estates, represents 4% of the French vineyard but almost 9% of the turnover of French AOCs and 20% of their exports. explains Monday June 29 the president of the Interprofessional Office of Burgundy wines (BIVB), Louis-Fabrice Latour. More info in English here: Burgundy Wines

The first to announce their Fall Wine fairs! At supermarkets Système U, Hyper U and magasin U stores take place from September 29 to October 10, 2020. Système U , which includes Hyper U, Super U, and Magasin U stores offers a 2020 wine fair made up of 752 references, including 60 organic, biodynamic or HVE (High Environmental Value) wines. The offer is thus much narrower than last year (around 1,000 references) the range of wines available remains considerable and can cover 14 French wine regions, with a rich diversity of appellations. Bordeaux wines are in the majority among this 2020 wine fair catalog of U stores. The average price of a bottle on the brand’s catalog is 10.98€, which positions System U in a wine fair that tends to towards the middle range. The heart of the selection is displayed at prices between 5 and 10 euros.

Despite health constraints, the 1st edition of the Festival Vallée du Rhône en musique or the Rhône Valley Music Festival will be organized from July 31 to August 19, 2020. Under the artistic direction of Grégory Girard, cellist, and under the patronage of Frédéric Lodéon, it will be punctuated by eight concerts by songs or classical music in different sites or wine-growing areas: at the Château du Barroux (84, Mont ventoux), at the Domaine de la Palud (Orange), at the Château de la Croix Chabrières (Bollène), or at the Château de Suze-la-Rousse , where the festival will end on August 19. More info here: Vallée du Rhône en musique

To wrap up this post some overall information: The French vineyard produces 3,240 different wines for 1,313 different names in 80 departments and 16 major vineyards. The 16 French vineyards, with 3245 labeled wines (2959 AOC-AOP, 286 IGP), and the 25,000 French wine-growing towns!. La vie est belle; en vino veritas!

Some webpages that I have used over the years and never a faute are:

Hachette vins here : https://www.hachette-vins.com/a-propos/

The online Vinatis when not able to go direct you can have it in French, German, Italian and I have it in English; the prices are for delivery in France: https://www.vinatis.co.uk/

And my all time favorite, cannot even remember when I started shopping here for wines, liquors, porto etc and present in many towns in France lucky to have it here in Vannes and Lorient nearby. Nicolas wine stores more info in English, also in French and deliveries ok in Europe. https://www.nicolas.com/en/

Even thus my first priority is to visit on site the vineyards and come back for more. Only in need time do I ordered online and sometimes stop by the store like the Nicolas. Hope It helps

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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