The following post is a very literal illustration of the seven-part story structure learned during the fun and inspiring session with the Cookus Interruptus team at the 2013 International Food Bloggers Conference. This is also a chance to highlight one of my favorite sessions from the weekend, wine tasting and live tweeting with Bordeaux Wines. For a recap of the conversations, make sure to look through #IFBCBordeaux.
Once upon a time, a young girl with an ID purchased at el Paseo de Diego found herself traveling through the vineyards of Napa Valley with her boisterous family. Through dumb luck, she didn’t get carded at two wineries and sat at the grown-ups table for tastings. And she got hooked on that experience: check the color, swirl the glass, smell, sip, aerate, swallow, sigh in delight, and repeat. Many years later, she would meet a handsome man who shared this enjoyment of good wine and great food. They were lucky enough to go back to Napa Valley, and some other great places where grapes grow and every day life revolves around them.
Every day, she would wonder where this love of wine would take her next. There are wine countries in places where she could have never imagined this before. Her 3 year old blogging hobby had connected her to people that talked about wineries in places as remote to her as Croatia, Hungary and Lebanon. She would monitor her favorite stores for new labels and varietals, but that wasn’t enough.
Until one day, a great opportunity materialized. The 2013 International Food Bloggers Conference would take place in Seattle, Washington. The state of Washington is the second largest producer of wine in the United States, and there would be chances to taste some local wines, learn more about the area’s terroir and broaden her horizons. She booked a spot at the conference, planned the trip, and set off with her husband to the Emerald City.
Because of that, she attended the session on Bordeaux wines held by the knowledgeable and extremely likeable Sam Klingberg and Ward Kadel. Even though she was well acquainted with some of the different varieties of Bordeaux wine, this proved the perfect chance to get to know other blends, especially the white ones. Some of the white grapes grown in Bordeaux include Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillion, and Muscadelle. The white wines tasted during the session included:
- Sparkling wine made with 100% Sémillon grapes (Cremant de Bordeaux – Jaillance, Cuvée de l’Abbaye Brut)
- Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc blend (Château Carignan l’Orangerie)
- Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadelle blend (Château Graville Lacoste)
- Sauternes style Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc blend (Château Haut Mayne)
The first two wines tasted, the sparkling Crémant and the Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc blends, had light and fruity profiles. They could have been a natural match for sushi, salads, and other light dishes. The Château Graville Lacoste was aged in French oak barrels and took some of the properties we normally associate with Chardonnay based wines: richer and with creamier notes from the malolactic fermentation in the barrel. A common trait for all: white Bourdeaux blends should be served cold (between 43°F and 49°F).
(Back to the seven-part story structure. Almost got carried away there…)
Because of that, her mind raced back to a trip she and her husband took back in 2010, especially to that great meal over at L’Estacade. L’Estacade was a great restaurant across the Garonne river, with views of the Place des Quinconces. Upon arriving to the restaurant, she tasted her first Sauternes as an aperitif. A bottle of Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon blend followed. The wine tasting at IFBC had the power to bring back those memories.
Until finally, she snapped out of her reverie. There were three additional red Bordeaux blends to focus on!
And ever since that day, her thoughts wander back to Bordeaux, to all those places that still beg to be discovered and savored and researched through Bordeaux.com. But in the meantime, there’s always a chance to go back through a glass of wine. That will be as sweet as a Sauternes.
This account is the second part of a three-post commitment with our friends in IFBC, Foodista and Zephyr Adventures, to blog about our experiences in the conference, our interactions with the sponsors, and the city of Seattle in exchange for a reduced conference fee. All opinions and flights of fancy are 100% my own.