JC in France May - June 2018 | Day 18

Date: 22-06-2018

This is the big day! First, it is Saturday and every Saturday morning Beaune (a beautiful Medieval township) offers a superb market of fresh produce but also bric a brac and handcrafted goods. As the weather is great a lot of people are around which makes the market very vibrant and colourful. Secondly, tonight we are all going to enjoy a 'Chapitre' at the Chateau Clos de Vougeot with the Chevaliers du Tastevin. Ever since its creation in 1934, the Confrérie des Chevaliers du Tastevin has set itself the task of promoting Burgundy, notably its wines and cuisine, preserving and reviving its traditional festivals, folklore and customs, and encouraging the development of tourism in the region.
But first, we had a visit/tasting at Domaine Drouhin-Laroze in Gevrey Chambertin. A magnificent property with a huge park right in the middle of the village. Five generations have been running the Domaine for 163 years, Caroline and Nicolas, Christine and Philippe's children represent the sixth. They farm 11.5 hectares and over 40% of today's Domaine Drouhin-Laroze is grand cru vineyards! In fact six different Grand Crus - Chambertin Clos de Bèze, Chapelle-Chambertin, Latricières-Chambertin, Bonnes Mares, Musigny and Clos de Vougeot. Putting together a domaine like this today would be impossible. Financially it would be impossible because of the strong increase in land prices in recent years. It would also be impossible because very, very little Grand Cru land comes up for sale nowadays. We had a very interesting tasting by comparing two different Gevrey Chambertin 1er Crus and two different Grands Crus all in the 2016 vintage. We all found the wines very attractive with their clean, fresh red berry fruit aromas and spicy, medium weight, soft palate. A real treat!
Christine Drouhin 'la maitresse de maison' served us lunch in a very attractive veranda right in the middle of the vineyard. We started with delicious gougeres (cheese chou) followed by a classic 'jambon persillé' (a kind of brawn), local cheeses and a homemade chocolate mousse. It was delicious!