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Ess May 16th, 2001 08:24 AM

Wine and Food in France...
I’ve been pouring over my travel brochure of the Val de Loire, Berry and Pays de Chartres. It’s called “Delightful Flavors” and is published by the Comite de Promotion Region Centre (please excuse lack of accents). What a beautiful brochure with beautiful photos and it’s such a pleasure to read, I wanted to share a couple of passages from it. <BR> <BR>“…Sancerre remains one of the most prestigious Berry wines but the vineyards of Menetou-Salon, that go back to the Gaulish period, are currently being relaunched. There you will taste fruity, lively, fresh and characterful sauvignons, a few generous and powerful reds. Less well known, the wines of Quincy and of Reuilly also have an AOC and include sauvignon that gives its plant fragrance, its gunstone taste and vivacity. They should be drunk young, preferably in the rural tranquility of a small town dominated by a chateau or a slate-covered steeple.” <BR> <BR>"To the north of Berry, in Boischaut that already suggests something like neighbouring Touraine, a very specific plant life gives goats’ milk a unique taste. Valencay cheeses have a fine reputation, like the Pouligny-St-Pierre, that has enjoyed an AOC for over a quarter of a century. A rare distinction that is shared with the famous crottin de Chavignol. These cheeses are eaten with a glass of Sancerre, or a red, white or rose Valencay, that always delights the palate of a honest man.” <BR> <BR>It has some recipes from the area, too. One starts off, “Take a young hazel grouse…” It calls for thin truffle slices to be inserted under the skin, then the whole thing is baked in an iron cauldron filled with salt that bakes into a block. The block of salt has to be broken to remove the bird. <BR> <BR>Aren’t those charming descriptions? I hope you don’t think I’m nuts for posting all the above, but I’m getting so excited about our trip I had to share it. We leave next week. I’m going to drink Sancerre with an honest man in the rural tranquility of a small town dominated by a slate-covered steeple. And eat like a glutton.

kavey May 16th, 2001 09:26 AM

<BR> <BR>Ess... it sounds like heaven ;) <BR> <BR>Have a wonderful trip and tell us all about it when you are back? <BR> <BR>Kavey

Ann May 16th, 2001 10:48 AM

Do visit Sancerre, it is lovely. Gien too, and visit the porcelaine factory. And then follow the route Jacques Coeur. The Berry region is not often mentioned but has great charm.

Rex May 16th, 2001 11:01 AM

The NY Times (my favorite travel publisher - - after our hosts, of course) ran a nice piece on the &lt;&lt;Sologne&gt;&gt; last year - - which is part of the same region mentioned in the nice descriptive post contributed by Ess this morning. <BR> <BR>CHOICE TABLES <BR> <BR>In the Sologne, Feasting On the Season's Game <BR> <BR>BY JACQUELINE FRIEDRICH <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR>As with all NYTimes items, registration is required to read this, but it's free. <BR> <BR>And unlike "regular" features, articles which appear in the Choice Tables series do not "expire" into "pay-to-view" from one week to the next. <BR> <BR>Does anybody besides me think that this is part of the "difficult business environment" faced by - - so much good information being given away on the internet? <BR> <BR>Are all of us buying fewer books now? Maybe we ought to go out and buy some Fodor's publications today - - I'd rather shell out a few bucks (and add to my library) if it means reducing the risk of losing this forum. <BR> <BR>Indeed, I would pay to register here. <BR> <BR>Best wishes, <BR> <BR>Rex <BR>

Ess May 16th, 2001 12:16 PM

Thank you Kavey, Ann and Rex. I'm very much looking forward to our getaway (well, that's putting it mildly!) I certainly do plan to visit Sancerre and Gien, too - I would love to buy some dessert plates. Thank you, Rex, for the NY Times referral, I'll look it up. I haven't been able to find much specific info about Berry on the web, other than reservation sites for hotels. I tried to find an English translation of George Sand's La Mere du Diable to get my imagination going for the area, but haven't had any luck so far. Thanks again!

Rex May 16th, 2001 04:08 PM

You're welcome, Ess... It would be great to read a trip report following your travels in this part of France. <BR>

Ess May 17th, 2001 04:42 AM

I will certainly report back on everything! I'll have to keep notes this time so I can remember the names.

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