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French Embassy Dublin Tasting Feb2010

February 25th, 2010

The wonderful Ely CHQ for French Embassy Tasting

On Thursday February 18th 2010, Ely CHQ in Dublin hosted the French Embassy wine tasting where a number of French winemakers presented their wares to the trade, in the hope of securing a little business. The very atmospheric caverns in the basement of Ely CHQ held court and the confiscated pirate loot of years gone by was nowhere to be seen. I was delighted to see a number of the wines that I sell on the shelves of the very wine orientated restaurant on show. But I was here to look for wines that were not yet on show in the Emerald Isle.

The place was not as crowded as one might expect but that made for a very comfortable tasting environment. You could have a good conversation with the winemakers. Some vineyards sent reps but the most interesting tables had as you would imagine, the people who get their hands dirty in among the vines.
There was one particualr table where I had the most wonderful conversation with a winemaker who’s family have had the estate for centuries. As is the traditional custom, the winemaker tastes everything with you, but I got to this man a little late in the day, and he had been tasting all day. We had a great conversation in French ( he has no English ), about all manner of things French. Some of his wine were probably the star of the show for me as well. Passion and wine are great bedfellows.

A punter enjoying the wines on show

There were some fantastic old Burgundies on show from Chateau de Villars Fontaine, with 1993, 1996 and 2001 Pinot Noir and some very fresh 1997 and 2003 Chardonnay. There was some cracking Rhone Valley wines including a wonderful ( but expensive ) Condrieu. The VDP Viognier from the same estate offered better value and a really interesting nose.

Beaujolais was on show and in great order as were the sparklers from the Loire Valley – elegance at a great price. A couple of photos and a shaky video from the day.

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