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Garstang Wine Circle Tour 2016 Day 3 Roman Days

Roman Days

Jennifer chanelling her inner Roman woman!

Jennifer chanelling her inner Roman woman!

We called this day Roman as we visited  an important site – the Museum of Amphoralis near Narbonne, where one of the largest industrial production of amphorae, roof tiles and household earthenware, was situated.  During out guided tour, we were greeted by Helène Serrano – a specialist in roman wine and her neice who actually makes wines to the traditional Roman recipes – vin antique as it is called.  We tasted this wine in different areas of the museum, while learning all about the fascinating methods of production and why this site was so successful and important (natural resources of wood and clay, vineyards, naviagable waterways).  Lunch was in the reconstructed workers house and of course we had a Roman lunch based of real roman recipes of the day.  Romans used to eat alot of sweet and sour together and the main course of a game stew was flavoured with dried fish sauce, aniseed and other delicious flavours.

We returned to Limoux relataively early as dinner was at a local wine merchants, where we were entertained by friends of Jean-Luc – on accordion and guitar – with contributions from Jean-Luc on vocals and of course Richard who was itching to join in  – he has wonderful tenor and singing in French poses no problems for him!.  Dancing and singing all round, of course accompained by local wines and tasty canapés – another memorable day over.


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Garstang Wine Circle Tour 2016 Day 1

Hotting up in the Corbières

2016 a very hot and dry year for their vines - Chateau La BaronneOur first stop of the tour was with Anne Lignères from Château La Baronne in Moux.  Always a pleasure to see Anne as she not only speaks excellent English, she also has a great sense of humour .  She needed all this good humour as she showed us her organic vinyards- some dating back 120 years.  She has had very little rainfall for a number of months and as a result her vines were very stunted with some grapes no bigger than peas.  As she has been organic and bio-dynamic for a number of years and knows her vines are strong enough to withstand the drought but her yeild will be much lower this year.  The group absoutley loved the visit – with the fascinating teracotta amphores and ‘eggs’ for both fermenting and ageing.  They loved her wines even more, especially the vermentino and her 100% carrignan.  A great start to the tour.

Free lunch in Narbonne – nothing nicer than dining like a local on a terrace -watching the world go by – luckily we left no-one behind as we headed out of Narbonne and had an interesting guided visit to the Abbey of Fronfroide followed by a tasting in their cellars of the wines produced there.  A happy but tired group then headed back in the bus to their home for the week – the Hotel Modern et Pigeon in Limoux.



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