Tag Archives: wine

The Vigneron at work

27 Oct
squeeze those babies

squeeze those babies

That’s it.  The grapes are all in and the Vigneron is content.  No more 24/7 reading of satellite images and predicted weather patterns on numerous websites, he can relax and is relieved that this region has been pretty bloody lucky with its weather.

The grapes on the vines looked great and ripened slowly resulting in fruit with a lower baume and high maturity.  So, enfin, 2013 looks like a good year!  The man is happy.

Autumn vines, La Liviniere

Autumn vines, La Liviniere

Autumn vines 2

I came down from the hill rather early a couple of mornings ago and had a peek at what was going on in the cellar.  I love the smell in there.  Takes me back to when we met.  OK squeaky violins time – yes, harvest time is special for me, it was during a harvest, all those years ago, that the V and I met.  I was in my hometown, Adelaide and he was ‘the Frenchie’, with little English (come on, admit it), clad in King Gee work gear, a divine Roman nose, working long vintage hours for a winemaker friend – that swept me off my feet.

Fast forward a decade or more, and I am still smitten when I smell the tanks of fermenting grapes in the cellar (oh to bottle this in a jar, a quick whiff and happy married couple all over again…).

‘Les Vendanges’ is a dynamic time and as I’ve said many times before, the village comes alive when the grapes are coming in.  A whole year’s work is reaping its rewards and the old tractors are out on every village road, chugging in full force with trailers laden with glistening grapes.  Even our baby was born on the first day of an Aussie harvest…

But let me get back to where I started.  I was in the village early one morning this week and called in on the V to see what was going on in his cellar.  The red grapes are all resting in their tanks and every couple of days they’re  ‘pumping-over‘.  After a month of this, they will put it all through the press.  One more step towards a delightful, drinkable juice.

Here’s some images for you from that morning, in and out of the cellar…

hq bn

ben at work

Benji in the cellar

Benji and Yves

grenache

grenache!

juicy Grenache

nose

gren a gren bthe Grenache resting in wooden 'tank'

the Grenache resting in wooden ‘tank’

And over the road…

the neighbours opposite

the neighbours opposite, Domaine Arnaud

yves 2

…another neighbour, another Yves – of Chateau Faiteau, the cousin of Domaine Arnaud…(in a village, it’s all family)

Eloise

Eloise, downtown La Liviniere

downtown La Liviniere

Eloise and Fanny

Eloise and Fanny

nap

heart door

hearts

laundry wall

aut col

…and the ride back up the hill to home

autumn col 1

Advertisements

picking

11 Oct
Ambroise emptying 'la hotte'

Ambroise emptying ‘la hotte’

Picking at last.

There’s been stops and starts… and now it’s all GO to get the grapes in.

We’re harvesting three weeks later than previous years, but it’s shaping up to be a pretty good ‘recolte’ … there’s a charged atmosphere and smiles all round.

I’ll fill you in on this harvest over a few posts, but here’s a selection of pics from today, in and out of our village.

(you may note some ‘fx’ in the images – my dear old camera is on the blink so what you see are the results of lumping around with a clunky electronic rectangle)

woke to to the noise of the harvester outside the kitchen window

woke to to the noise of the harvester outside the kitchen window

tent-picking

tent-picking

checking out the noise... a tractor cruising down the driveway

checking out the noise… a tractor cruising down the driveway

picking 1

pick cal1

here comes the sun

cal pick3

empty 2

empty 3

empty 4

cal 7

house on the prairie

pick cal 2Meanwhile, back in the village…

ca 4

chat arnaud

clearing out remains of the ‘pressoir’ (press)

ca 3

the Vigneron having a spray

the Vigneron having a spray

...and the ladies are still out checking the 'raisins'

…and the ladies are still out checking the ‘raisins’

 

Cheers, Sante, Bottoms Up …to Marieke Hardy

11 Jun

OK straight up.  I love drinking.

And I love this woman.

marieke hardy book

She likes drinking too –

“My illustrious career with the bottle began with the person my mother used to refer to somewhat hopefully as ‘your naughty friend’, Lisa Jenkins, implying that without Lisa’s influence I would probably have spent my downtime cross-stitching and nursing sick orphans”…  – Marieke Hardy, ‘You’ll Be Sorry When I’m Dead’

And she is so hellishly cheeky.   I loved this book.  It’s beautiful, funny, poignant, sexy, delirious, profound – and so, so WRONG.

READ HER!

Marieke Hardy at her book signing for "You'll Be Sorry When I'm Dead", at Mosman Library on Monday 19 September (photo courtesy of the Mosman Library)

Marieke Hardy at a book signing for “You’ll Be Sorry When I’m Dead”, Mosman Library, N.S.W., Monday 19 September (photo courtesy of the Mosman Library)

naked wine wife vigneron naked winemaker pussy #2

30 Oct
one big, hairy...

one big, hairy…

Oh boy, now I am in a PANIC.  Could you please put a BIG ‘P.S.’ next to this part and pretend it was part of the other post???

My lovely friend Jen has just informed me that part of a text I had written and hadn’t finished – a draft – WENT ONLINE!!!?!!!  Whoops.  I must have pressed ‘publish’ when I meant to press the button ‘SAVE DRAFT’!?!!

See what I mean?  I really need to get my head around a computer and its buttons.  THIS WAS NOT INTENDED.  So now you have had a glimpse (if you saw the first version online before I updated, that is) into some crazy text that wasn’t finished and sounded so smutty (it ended with a polite ‘naked hairy pussy’).  Double whoops and I’m sorry!…

So, here goes: part 1 + part 2

(part 1)

I’m a loser when it comes to all things technical.   Almost anything in the realm of computers intimidates me – and the fact that I don’t know much and employ the good old ‘trial and error’ method, there are often moments of sheer panic as I wipe out hours of work off the screen… I get those delightful hot flushes of fear all from sitting at a keyboard.  So much fun.

I still can’t believe I managed to get this blog working, though I admit I nearly crashed it a few days ago.  It was only through the kindness of a person out there in the WordPress community that I managed to keep it on the road.

As I sat in a haze of panic, something did however make me smile:  “Naked Hairy Pussy”.

9GAG Lore Butler

image from 9GAG – Lore Butler

(part 2 – …and you thought it ended with a naked hairy pussy)

As I was scurrying around the working pages and forums on my computer when I thought I’d crashed it, I suddenly saw the list of all the keywords and phrases typed by people into their computers to find my blog – or rather, found my blog by accident, with them.  It was illuminating!  They were all listed under “Search Engine Terms”.   Find out more about Search Engine term and ‘optimization’ here!

Naked Hairy Pussy was one of them.

And these were too: (I’m going to link these terms to stuff in my blog where possible, just to give myself a plug – not so sure for the N.H.P. though…)

Adventure Time Naked

Dying Hair with Orange Blow Hairdryer

The Naked Vigneron

Naked Missus

Leeds Wife Naked

What to Have For Lunch When In-Laws Are Here

Vignerons Wife

Naughty Aussie Wife Facebook

Fish in a Can

Julie Andrews

Old Oven Door Handle

Flip Flops Girls Austria

Naked Winemaker

La Bite Une Andouillette

…I had a chuckle and got on with the computer problem, but this time smiling.

SO, that’s it basically, the second part to this post.  Thanks for your patience and understanding!

THANK YOU JEN!!!

I told you I’m a loser.

some sights #5 – images from the Minervois

21 Sep
the view from Chateau Maris
a view from Chateau Maris
Vendanges

HARVEST!

the eggs!

Now this is crazy (but beautiful) …LES OUEFS! – these are the egg-shaped tanks used to age wine in the Maris winery.
I keep thinking Mork from Ork is going to crack out of one…

inside the new Chateau Maris cellar

Jean-Pierre in the Chateau Maris winery yesterday (the walls are made of hemp!)

harvest in La Liviniere

harvest in La Liviniere

la liviniere

driving from La Liviniere

oncoming 2CV in Rieux

oncoming 2CV in Rieux

DANGER!!  Blonde behind the wheel

DANGER!! Blonde behind the wheel

Homps

Homps

Mauzac Nature 2011

Now this was hard, parting with this bottle today to throw it into the recycling bin.  It was SO delicious!! A sparkling white that almost tasted like a very dry cider. Lucky the bottle was big, it went down so quickly!
(Merci Isabelle et Vincent)

last night's tomatoes

Last night’s tomatoes.
Got to make the most of these babies before the season is out.

Saint Chinian flags

Bleu, Blanc et Rouge in Saint Chinian

pooch parade

pooch parade

carca wine shop

wine shop in Carcassonne

door handle

‘une poignee’ (door handle)

hanging the laundry

hanging out the laundry

European Carpenter Bees

European Carpenter bees in the garden

thongs, flip-flops, claquettes

‘thongs’ in my home (yes, not the ones on your butt), ‘flip-flops’ in the UK and the US, ‘Jandals’ in NZ, ‘slops’ in South Africa, ‘schlapfen’ in Austria… ‘tongs’ or ‘claquettes’ in France. I like this one – Lilas said the name comes from the sound they make as you walk? Anyone know if this is right?

window in Saint Chinian

window with ‘fresh’ flowers

Rebecca's curry

Rebecca’s Kerala Prawn Curry, mmmmmn. The onion bahjis were a knock-out too, but my photo didn’t work out

a house inside a building

a house in a house

Grandma's Pussy

‘Grandma’s Pussy’ – from Uncle Arthur’s Bedtime Stories, Series B, Volume 10
…Really!

velo in Rieux

velo in Rieux

sunset

sunset in the garden

a Naked tour

7 Sep

extraordinary-naked-people-metamorphoses25 from Haokuhu (from '4Shared')

Time for a bit of a plug.  Mmn, maybe not the right word here(!)- time for a little update on a little adventure Benji and I enjoyed this Summer…

We hit the road and joined the Naked Wines Tasting Tour of the UK.

But sorry to disappoint, no further naked bodies to follow – we didn’t get down and dirty with grapes and wine – but some pics of the many wonderful people we met and re-met and chinked glasses with, from all corners of the wine-making world, as we travelled the countryside in a tour bus driven by the lovely Bob, in late June, to show our wares.

the bus in Cardiff

our bus parked out the front of Cardiff City Hall

in the bus!

on the road

the Naked Tour

a bit of spilt red…

Norwich, Cambridge, London, Southampton, Bristol, Cardiff, Manchester, Edinburgh, Leeds, Birmingham – nearly each stop on the 2012 tour (Benji and I could only make half of it) was sold-out and each tasting event held in a beautiful venue of each town.  It’s an impressive sight seeing the doors open to hundreds of wine enthusiasts ready, with ther glasses poised, to try over 140 wines!

glasses to go

glasses to go

tasting in Manchester

tasting in Manchester

tasting Manchester

France, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Austria, Germany, Chile, Argentina, South Africa, New Zealand, the U.S. and bien sur, Australia! – these are the countries that the winemakers selling their wines with Naked Wines hail from and what a bunch a great people they are!

It was brilliant to finally meet all the people behind the names I’ve only, until now, seen and admired from the website – and get to try their wines for the first time and to enjoy some time talking on the bus, over a breakfast table, behind a tasting table, over a take-away pizza, watching the Australian cricket warming-up in the nets at Lord’s, on a walk trying to find the nearest public loo, disco-ing on a dancefloor until the early hours…  You know, quality times like that.  It’s not often I get out of my hamlet and get to bond with people from all over the world in such a short time, having so much fun!

And then of course, there were the tasters!  A thriving mass of curious, enthusiastic, incredibly friendly people who came out to our tastings and worked their way through the hundreds of bottles.  Benji and I loved the atmosphere of each tasting and picked up good feedback, first-hand, on his wines.  It was hard not to soak up the fun – obligatory tasting required for quality checks.  And then there were all those wines from everyone else that we hadn’t even tried yet….

All in all a great tour and LOTS of fun.  I kinda like being the Vigneron’s helper.

Ryan does London

Ryan does London

Naked people

what a lovely bunch

the dudes outside at Lord's

out the back at Lord’s

uk tour 2102

a UK tour

some of the wines on show

just some of the wines on show…

And after every good wine tasting, there comes a delicious all five food groups breakfast…

next morning's helpers

…next morning’s helpers: pain killers in a vending machine and a full English breakfast – the lady serving our breakfast in Southampton spied my Vegemite and plonked a whopping jar of Marmite on the table – she insisited I eat ‘their’ stuff while in their country

And they all (well, apart from the couple we saw having a tiff under the tree in Cardiff) went home happy.

going home

going home

As seen near Saintes… (signs!)

20 Jun
as seen near Saintes...

We were on our way to a party in the Charente last Saturday and followed this car on a roundabout…

Benji and I had a party to go to near his parents’ place in the Charente last weekend.  We found ourselves following this guy, somewhere near Saintes…

HOMME 55

CHERCHE A

RENCONTRE

FEMME 48 AN ET

AIMENT NATURE

MARCHE. ANIMEAUX

TEL….

He’s saying:

Man 55

Looking to

Meet woman 48 years plus

Loves Nature

Walking. Animals

Ingenious.  I hope he’s found his woman.

Speaking of signs, here’s one I recently spotted on someone’s front door :

dog con

You should ask a French person how to say this one

I think their dog’s name is Polo… and he jumps, and he’s a…

And I love this one too, seen on the back of an old guy’s truck:

Buvez du Vin!

Beziers Propaganda Association for Wine sticker

DRINK!!!!!

…and I’ve just thought,

L’AMOUR + LES CHIENS + LE VIN = LA FRANCE!?!   Ooh la la.

romance frenchie style

romance, Frenchie style

 

 

%d bloggers like this: