My holiday trip down through France to Italy where we spent a day sorting the sale, finally, of our appartment in the outskirts of San Remo, it was originaly purchased as a stepping stone to moving to Italy when we retired but ill health stopped that and it became a bit of a mill stone which we let out in the summer to pay the costs etc, now badly in need of a total refurb we have sold at last, I could easily make a case for the Italian system being the most long winded and bureaucratic in Europe though I think we are now not far behind, but I digress.
We returned to Provence and stayed awhile at the Hotel Montmirail where I met, just, MOW I could probably done with a few tips on where to visit but the chance was missed !
As this was foremost a holiday winery visits were limited and some pre planning went in to make sure my time at wineries was not wasted, my notes on the wineries and wines tasted will follow, but for now I am going to wade ? through the cheapies I purchased in the French supermarkets, the sheer size of some of these places means you need a map and a lot of patience to find what you want, we only used three the biggest being the Auchan on the outskirts of Avignon.
Whilst madam went off, never to be seen again searching for necessities I perused the wine aisles, as there is virtually nothing non French on the shelves the choice is enormous and most of the cheaper producers names unknown, well to me anyway, I made a decision not to look for upmarket bargains owing to two factors, it is difficult with many to know if they are actually cheaper at home and the majority are not great years, so I declined, and went for cheap and cheerful we hope.
The bottles in the photo are the majority of what I brought back some were duplicated and the price was between 3.60 and 5.60 euros for the dearest.
I should add at this stage that a couple of bottles came from the LeClerc supermarket outside of Colmar on our stop on the return leg, not my favorite French supermarket but this one had a big and diverse wine range including Collioure’s and Bandols but they were out of the price band, but as you can see in the photo one of those bottles has been opened and drunk, the Alsace Pinot Noir at 5.20 euros.
This turned out to be very good for the price and actually improved with a bit of air time, sweet but not in a Chilean way a middling red in colour and some length, suprisingly at this price point and cherry and a bit of licorice, not bad at all, but, there is always a but, it did have a strange nose that did not diminish, had great difficulty putting a name to it even with help, a sort of cooked cold onion odour almost medicinal, but it would not stop me trying Alsace Pinot Noirs at this price in the future and there seem to be an increasing amount of them appearing.
As I was restricted to drinking whites with food as the wife cannot drink red wine a couple of very good cheaper ones came to the fore, firstly the Domaine de Montine Gourmandises blanc Grignan-les- Adhemar and secondly the Cotes de Rhone blanc from Chateau Concancoone Seguret, both cracking whites with that slightly oily smooth texture in the mouth, sadly I could not hunt them down in the shops, but needless to say TWS does stock the Gourmandises, I did also bring back some white wine from Domaine Brusset in Gigondas, I wont give my taste notes on the wines below until all have been consumed as some are comparable to the Ventoux wines and I want to see how they stack up against the more venerable estates in the area, quite well I think, TBC