Contrary to appearances in the photos below, it actually alternated between bucketing down (and even hailing at one point) and bright sunshine. Luckily there were enough tents to hide in and the rain kept the numbers down a bit (even so, it was often difficult to get to each counter to do a tasting, since dickheads kept just crowding around while drinking their wine instead of moving out of the way).
We found out what wines of the Loire we were just by smelling various scents - I am a red Gamay, a Chinon rosé or a white Jasnières (a wine I'd never actually heard of before). I was surprised at how accurate it was based on just smell. It wasn't even wine smells per se, more like the sort of grassy or charcoaley or whatever you might actually identify in a wine if you can identify these things. I normally cannot tell you at all whether a wine smells of raspberries or grass cuttings, so it was a suprise that he nailed it (I do like a light, fruity red like a Gamay, of course I love Chinon rosé, and although I don't drink whites, I took the opportunity to taste a Jasnières and I did actually enjoy it). This was all written out for us on a "doctor's prescription", so there you go, I just have to drink wine for my health.
I didn't manage to buy as much wine as I would have liked (only three bottles!) but we had a nice time and it sttayed all very civilised. My sister and her friends also stocked up on a few bottles and - tragedy! - because they didn't have any checked luggage, we had to have a go at drinking some of them back in their hotel room that evening before heading out for a meal. (A kind of disappointing flammekueche, as opposed to the as-always delicious tartiflette we had at The Cheese Restaurant the night before.)
|Everyone looks genuinely chuffed here... Could it be all the wine?|
|It's a bold claim, but I dunno, I think I know a better Dutch Mod Garage Beat Surf band. Fat and the Crabs on the other hand... outstanding. (Also, sounds like a night with your momma, hi-yo!)|
|It's obligatory to pay homage to the monster of Tours|
On Sunday, we took a little daytrip down to Chinon, one of my favourite towns (which I've been to on a number of occasions, including with my sister). The girls went on a visit of the château, while I had a wander around the town and, more importantly, sipped rosé in the sunshine (Sunday was a genuinely nice day, weather-wise). We also had a long and deliciously lunch (and more rosé) at a café on the main square. I had a yummy coq au vin. It was all very relaxed - the weekend was all about food and wine, really, especially for me since I didn't even go to the château (been before). Unfortunately, Jess says the feature mould is no longer in situ :(
|A street in Chinon|
|I found a Secret Jesus underneath some scaffolding|
|A statue of Rabelais in Chinon. My Rabelais Fun Fact is that he once wrote that a swan's neck makes for the best toilet paper known to man|
|The Vienne in Chinon|
|Chilling on the banks of the Vienne|
A lovely weekend although I'm looking forward to (continue with) a quiet June! Oh and PS DJ Pie and DJ Pie's pies made a special encore appearance at my sister's request. I even made some special goat's cheese and pumpkin pies for her (being a vege). DJ Pie is available for all your party needs! PPS Finally, we have proper consistent nice weather - sunny and hot! Seriously, I was still wearing a coat into May, as the first photo above testifies to. Long may this continue!