Tuesday, May 8, 2007

French Wine Not In Key West

Ah, French Wines. I was very lucky to actually travel to France twice back in the early 1990's. Mike had business over there and, well twist my arm, ask if I would like to go. OF COURSE! These were my prime "getting into" wine years. I actually started keeping notes back then. But what was really cool was that one of his business contacts was a Frenchman who grew up in a town in the Loire Valley called Saumur. Still had family and friends there, so off we went to stay for a few days. Maybe someday I will put my whole experience into a book. To make a long story short, we visited his friends caves where we drank the wine directly from the barrels and also sat at kitchen tables and shared the wines with family. They did not speak English and we did not speak French. But we felt the warmth and hospitality flowing not matter what we all were saying. Oh I can still smell the dank, damp, moldy air down in those caves. OK Deb, back to reality.

The reason for all this nostalgia is the wine I found at a shop here that we enjoyed last evening. It is not from the Loire region, but from France. The wine I am speaking of is a 2005 Pierre Boniface, Apremont, Vin de Savoie, which is from the Savoie Department located near the lower slopes of the Alps. It was a wonderful straw colored white wine, with 11.5% alcohol. Popping the cork and taking that first sniff is what brought back memories. It had fresh touches of honey, maybe a little spice, but lots of fruit, especially crisp, ripe, green apples. The finish also had a hint of melon with a little tang on the tongue, which I remember several French wines have. I am not sure of the grape content, but in that region they use about 70% of the Jacquere grape. This low sugar grape makes a delicate almost ethereal white wine. I do wish the French would start putting more info on the labels, but then I guess the mystery and intrigue of the wine would be gone. Gotta love the French. But for only $12.99, I took a wonderful trip down memory lane!


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