Seattle Wine Blog

This blog is dedicated to commentary on all aspects of wine, especially short entries to help you find the best wines without the usual hype and spin. These are my frank, independent opinions, usually based on tasting wine at a public event, off the shelf or at the winery. "All creative acts must arise out of a specific soil and flicker with a spirit of place" -D.H. Lawrence

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Le Chateau De Mon Ami

I met Tim Corrigan when he was a mere boy of eight. I told him then that he would do great things. Now, an internationally famous designer, he invited his charming mother and sevnteen friends to spend a week at his Chateau, Le Grand Luce. And Grand it is with twenty to forty rooms. We feel like Cinderella and Cinderello for a week. The greatest thing of all - it's central location in the Loire Valley and the opportunity to taste all those wonderful Loire Valley wines.

I have mentioned in the past that I learned most of what I know about wine from my mentor, Fritzy Haskell, of Haskell's Liquors in Minneapolis. Back in those days there was very little interest in wine in the U.S. , but Fritzy had a passion for wine which she supported by selling liquor. She was so passionate about the wines of France (there was hardly any California wine at that time, especially, outside of California) that she arranged the wines of France in her shop the same layout as the geography of France. In other words, Loire Valley in the upper left, Chablis, Champagne and Burgundy in the upper right, Rhone wines in the lower right, and Bordeaux in the lower left. The Loire Valley wines stretched all the way across the shop from dry Muscadet in the"west" to dry Sancerre, Pouilly Fume and Quincy in the "east" In between were the sweeter whites of the Loire - Coteaux de Layon slightly to the "west" Vouvray slightly to the "east" and in the middle the glorious Cab Franc based reds of Chinon and Bourgueil.
Throw in some Savenniere, some Rose , Saumur, Quarts de Chaume, and a few others and you had the wines of the entire east-west length of the Loire available right there in the Midwest in the med- twentieth century along the north-south banks of the Missisippi River. I have never seen such an extensive collection of Loire Valley wines anywhere, not in any of thirty five countries, nowhere in the states, not even in the Loire Valley.

To celebrate our visit to Le Grand Luce, we toasted Tim Corrigan with some Kir Royale made with some gentle soft Vin Mousseux purchased right next door to the chateau A light supper was accompanied by some chilled red Saint Nicolas de Bourgueil. Last night our cepes omelettes, perfectly prepared by our Condon Bleu trained chef, Yves, were accompanied by some soft 2005 Jasnieres white. Tonight a more formal dinner. Stay tuned!


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