Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Back on the UGC week

The following comments were published in the June 2007 issue of VINIFERA (in the « impertinent column » of Jacques Perrin), a way to bring us back to the last UGC week.

“From caviar to Valandraud” – Monday, April 2

At this time of the year the picturesque town of Saint Emilion vibrates with a particular energy and excitement. As if the wine planet decided to meet there, on the same day. To a point where it is almost impossible to walk around the abrupt and busy street which crosses St Emilion. Fortunately, I have my alternate routes I keep secretly to myself. The visit at Jean-Luc Thunevin’s is one of the must of this great media event. With a relaxed and affable attention, he receives, in his home, in the heart of St Emilion, importers, journalists, wine enthusiasts, to introduce his wines, and the properties he consults for, cuvees he sells and friends winemakers he invites every year. This way, in the middle of samples of Bordeaux 2006, one can also taste, a happy bunch, the wines of Vega Sicilia, Pingus of Peter Sisseck, le Clos des Fées of Bizeul, other wonderful wines from the Languedoc, the Roussillon or from the Nahe! At the time our stomachs start to beg for attention, my concentration is disrupted by a bunch of Japanese who, scattered in the main room, seem to share a piece of information, which by the seriousness of their faces, appears to be at the same time important and confidential. Intrigued, I put my concentration aside for a moment to try to understand the reason for such agitation. One word seems to come back in the short sentences they exchange, like boomerangs, on top of the compact crowd: “Caviar, caviar!”. A little later, outside, in front of a buffet about to be pillaged, even though it is being protected like the Holly Grail by a group of knights about to indulge, I start to believe in my chances to practice one day the rudiments of the Hiragana language: a beautiful tin of Sevruga caviar sitting in the middle of the table, empty, polished like a precious box. Too late… Fortunately, Jean-Luc Thunevin, who never misses a thing, leaves me in the good care of his wife Murielle. She puts together a light meal in the kitchen of their first floor apartment. As one of my dear friend would say: “I lived worst moments in my existence but will avoid talking about them!”

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