Wines news of France VII !!

And as the big moment comes, let me tell you about some wine news of France again. The big moment is ongoing in several places, and even with the virus we go for it. This is the popular wine fairs or foire aux vins!!! Get ready,go!!

I have gotten in the bandwagon early and now follow religiously. Of course, if you read my blog I am a wine aficionado and diplomé of France and Spain. Let me tell you about this year event briefly ok.

Some of the nice merchants who does this better, me think ; my favorites.

Welcome to your Nicolas wine merchant in Vannes! At 7 place du Poids Public (my direct). The Nicolas cellar network was created in 1822 and today has 558 stores in eight countries. Nicolas promises this year a wine fair catalog 2020 renewed at 70%, with 61 references in promotion: 39 red wines, 18 white wines and 4 rosé wines. The brand is clearly focusing on accessible wines by offering half of its 2020 wine fair (foire aux vins) catalog for less than 10 euros after reduction. Nicolas relies on sound values by offering wines of prestigious appellations, particularly in Burgundy (Pernand Vergelesses 1er cru, Chablis …) and Bordeaux (Saint-Julien, Margaux …). Note the presence of the Château Rauzan Gassies and the Domaine Faiveley. There is more plurality in the less expensive wines, with wines from Alsace, the South-West and the Loire in particular.Last until October 13 2020. More info here:

Well hypermarket side, my fav since moving to Brittany in 2011 has been E Leclerc. The E Leclerc, hyper/super markets were the inventor of wine fairs (foire aux vins), and now they give priority to cuvées between 5-7€ , which are easy to drink. They have backlit the aisles with colors: orange-pink for the rosé, green for the whites and garnet for the reds. They have installed wine tasting macaroons in around 100 stores so far to guide consumers in their choices. All year round and during the autumn fair of course since wine is the star of the store at this time. The national selection comprises 200 wines and the regional one, 450. They highlight wines of immediate pleasure, with drinkability, very little woody, not too sunny, easy to drink, good value for money. This does not prevent   them from presenting many new products for lovers of discovery. Starts September 29 to October 10, 2020. More info on their webpage here:

And as I really started all this since living in Versailles and working in Paris got me to some fancy places between all ,these stand out. Lavinia, my store by Place de la Madeleine.

The wine merchant Lavinia offers for the 2020 wine fairs (foire aux vins) a selection of 150 cuvées from 10 French wine regions. Be careful, however, only 70 wines are available in all Lavinia points of sale. Lavinia relies heavily on organic, biodynamic and / or “natural” wines, which make up 55% of the catalog! The prices are correct, since more than half of their catalog contains cuvées for less than 20 euros. Most cuvées are offered between -10% and -20% of their initial price, but the prices are broken on some references. Until September 29 2020. More info here:

And another in my fav area for walks in Paris, the 16éme arrondissement and  La Grande Épicerie du Bon Marché, that of Passy and the website, has selected 210 references, each more tempting than the last for La Rentrée des vins. It emphasizes affordability and the taste of everyday wines. For twenty-one years, they have been organizing tastings to promote areas in which they believe. Their aim is to get the customer to understand the choices. The event ends October 15 2020 . More info on their webpage here:

Some advice that many give including my own assessment in order to avoid traps during Wine Fairs (Foire aux Vins).

The first is temptation. Let yourself be influenced. The brand that offers its favorite has often its interests to sell the stocks of such property. I doubt counselors volunteer. On the other hand, credibility is more justified when it comes to wine guides, that I read and follow too ,such as Hachette, Bettane and Desseauve, or reviews such as the Revue du Vin de France to name a few.

The temptation to trust the prices ! Medals rarely provide a guarantee. The wines presented are far from being the most remarkable of the appellations, and often come from large productions. That of the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles is in my view the only credible one. Why? Because only tasting professionals are authorized to participate, the wines that come out often offer real interest in terms of character, and definition.

Be careful of too low prices. These wines are, as it were, from unknown appellations. These are the low prices, less than 5 euros. Distrust, these are rarely good deals. Often wines from merchants, or branded wines, they have stocks to sell.  But; also at too high prices.   Very great wines, such as Petrus, Yquem, la Turque, Margaux, Latour, Ausone, Rayas, and so many others certainly do not need to be found on the shelves of wine fairs. to propose them in order to enhance their offer. For fun, and for glory. Because, do not dream, you will certainly not do good business with these wines. Simply, they are selling for a high price, across the world.

To make sure you don’t miss them, don’t hesitate to go to the opening evenings of the wine fairs. And further, aim for the mid-range: this is where the possible “deals” exist. In Bordeaux, the Crus Bourgeois, as well as certain other less famous classified Grands Crus remain “almost” sure values, although often devoid of character. Or, too consensual, at a price level that remains quite high. Focus primarily on very young vintages. You will have more guarantees on the quality of conservation, than old vintages, for which we do not know how or for how long they were stored. Unless , you like to collect them which never did I like to drink them!!

And some ideas on recent vintages as a general guide always.

The 2011 vintage was complicated to manage for the winegrowers. A summer spring, a very average summer, difficult conditions that despite everything allowed, paradoxically to the ‘cold’ soils, to have good maturities, with the winegrowers who will have done the sorting work throughout the summer. The hot soils have had more difficulty; nevertheless here again, the serious, diligent winegrowers have managed to bring in fine juices. An atypical vintage, but charming…

The 2012 vintage will certainly offer a little more structure compared to 2011, but there again, a certain heterogeneity. In places, the Merlot has reached good maturity. The most careful winegrowers will stand out, sorting work was necessary. Not a vintage for great aging, but it will bring the advantage of being able to prove to be quite easy and readable in the years to come.

The 2013 vintage remains complicated, with maturities often difficult to achieve, making them approachable wines after a few years of aging, the frameworks are not always generous.

The 2014 vintage offers a certain heterogeneity, but some wines turn out to be pretty, denser than the previous vintage, we will have to look for the few nuggets.

The 2015 vintage is more generous, complete, and above all more homogeneous. This is undoubtedly possible a vintage to cellar, even if in some appellations the temptation will be great to drink them young, on their fruit. Very nice vintage ,the one that will undoubtedly be favored, as far as possible.

The 2016, very good promises to keep, but it is a little too early to say … but something tells me that it will be a vintage in line with the remarkable 2010!

The 2017 is a successful vintage overall, sometimes extremely brilliant among some of the most serious winegrowers. A beautiful triptych 2015 – 2016 and 2017, definitely!

The 2018 is very good vintage. Indeed, this year benefited from a wet spring and a very beautiful summer . The harvest were therefore, both quantitative and qualitative.

And the, 2019  an excellent vintage. This is the result of favorable weather conditions, a dry summer, rather cool nights and some rains in early September. Generally speaking, it left on time and arrived the same. Many have imagined that with the very sunny periods that we have experienced, this vintage would be closer to 2003 or 2009, warm, generous.

There you go folks, you are well arm with the basic but good advice from yours truly. This is fun, tasting is allow and do try them all! spitting for tasting not drinking, to hold the day!! Its fun, already did mine on another store, Carrefour. Will go to E Leclerc and Nicolas next!! En Vino Veritas!

Drink in moderation, but drink, its good for you I say it here ::) And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

3 Comments to “Wines news of France VII !!”

  1. Sounds like a nice way to spend some time. I thought this kind of activity was under heavy restriction in France for the moment.

    Liked by 1 person

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