philosophe – Atypique et Remarquable!

Aujourd’hui nous avons reçu les notes du cercle des dégustateurs organisé par Autrement Vin Novembre 2012. L’année dernière nous avons présenté l’hédoniste, qui a trouvé sa place parmi les vins remarquables et cette année notre ambassadeur était philosophe.
Alors, nous, au Domaine de la Rencontre, sommes très fier de vous annoncer que lui aussi est placé parmi les vins remarquables – catégorie Atypique – 2012. philosophe a été si bien reçu par vous, nos clients, qu’il est en tête des ventes 2012 – un vrai succès pour notre “entre-deux”! Nous allons continuer de bouger le bateau en 2013 … les barriques mijotes!

Three Wine Men Manchester and London 2012

What a way for Domaine de la Rencontre to close the 2012 season of salons – Three Wine Men Manchester in the Museum of Science and Industry, followed by Three Wine Men London in Lord’s hallowed Cricket Ground! Julie was a happy bunny in both locations, it made sense talking about how we use light refraction and density measures to check how much potential alcohol we have – or have converted, in the juice before and during wine making. And it was fantastic having the bubble as a backdrop to our table – yes, the girl likes cricket!
Pierre loved meeting the Mancunians and visitors from a little further afield, and revelled in that typical northern friendliness. “Yes, I’m a genuine “froggie » and she’s an English winemaker!” said the man in lime green.. You can see us in photo number 62 on the Three Wine Men Manchester link! The visitors gave us a list of their favourite wine shops to contact, which we shall work on, promise!
Talking of which, there will very shortly be another wine venue to visit in the area. Le Tour de Belfort, Muriel and Andrew, are opening a venue called “Le vin, La table” at 10 Broomfield Lane, Hale. we are sure that you will enjoy visiting them.
Pierre was sorely missed in London as he had to fly back for the Terre de Vins salon in Narbonne. But my sister Jackie and friends Sue and Diane came along to bolster the spirits – or actually, to consume a few! Many thanks to Jackie for having the patience to guard the shop whilst I packed up! Thanks also to the other exhibitors for looking after me/us, especially Muriel and the couple from The Artisan Smokehouse, Tim and Gill Mathews, who supplied the fantastic smoked stilton – and then of course succulent smoked salmon, duck and beef – which so wonderfully set off our Vin Doux Naturels. My mouth is still watering from the mere thought of them!
We must admit to having felt nervous about how the public would take us and our wines One visitor came up and said “Everyone else has a table full of wines and you have four, proudly standing there. There must be a story, come on then, tell me…” Well, we never have a problem talking about our passion. And talk we did, in Bresponse to “Oooh, that’s really nice, I would never normally drink muscat, but that’s really good!” I can tell you that we never get tired of hearing that, to the contrary, it spurs us on to continue the revolution. And our labels and names, rencontre, philosophe, l’hédoniste and éclat, seem to please this side of the channel as much as they do in France. We will perhaps put a page to explain “La Rencontre” by Gustave Courbet. It is the centre piece of a Paris exhibition at the Grand Palais called “Bohèmes” at the moment.
But the greatest delight, for us, was listening to Olly or Oz or Tim talking about them. Olly’s quite right, rencontre goes very nicely with some juicy scallops. It was Oz’s description of what Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains, “the aristocrat” of the muscat family, was capable of doing, in Sainsbury’s “Encyclopedia of Wine” (1993/1995) that persuaded us to launch our odyssey. It was very gratifying, therefore, to listen to him telling the tasters that our wines captured those telltale muscat aromas with a good balance of acidity and fruit. And we can’t thank Tim enough, for his visit to us on 27 July, that led to us being at these shows in the first place. Sadly, the photos that we have of the days are all blurred – so if there is anyone out there with a photo that isn’t, we will gratefully publish it!
We humbly received many compliments from the visitors, amateur and professional, who encouraged us to keep pushing on with our plans. There are one or two out there who also have a dream of going off and doing what we have done and we hope that we have made them think that dreams can be real. When Tim visited us he said “You make it look like anyone can do this” and anything is possible, if you put your hearts and minds to it. We are very grateful for the words of advice that we received from fellow exhibitors about the UK market and export in general and we hope to keep in contact with several of them.
Our next steps must be to find ourselves UK distributors, and we have every intention of doing the shows with Three Wine Men next year, which is a great window to the public. We will keep you posted! And the invitation to visit the Domaine is always there, for those who fancy a little bit of that southern Mediterranean sunshine and fresh air. Julie’s Spring project is to sort the courtyard out, so that we can do alfresco tastings. Check out our events calendar on de la Rencontre, and give us a ring, to make sure that we will be there to receive you! But before that, there is a little matter of a delayed honeymoon to sort out, before we collapse into a heap – oh yes, and the pruning……

And let no one tell you that internet searches are not country influenced! I only found this commentary when back in the UK, so a very belated thank you for a little mention from Charlotte Hooson-Sykes
for her very kind words – and yes, we’re still on the lookout for a Uk distributor!

La Grande Messe

1200+ exposants, des petites exploitatons jusqu’aux grandes maisons logées dans les allées à perte de vue – bienvenue à la grande messe des Vignerons Indépendants Porte de Versailles.
Nous aurions pu nous sentir tout petit et perdu dans cette immense salle, mais de nouveau nous nous retrouvons entouré par des voisins acceuillants et éxperimentés qui nous encouragent avec leurs propres histoires et memoires de leurs premiers pas. Et quand nous voyons la fidelité de leur clientèle, nous comprenons tout le travail qui nous attend.
Et alors, quelle surprise que notre première journée soit agrémentée par la visite de clients Marseillais que nous avions vu le weekend précédent! Et les « expatriés du Sud » qui vivent aujourd’hui à Paris mais gardent leur coeur au bord la Mediterranée. Le monde est petit, Pierre trouve des personnes avec amis d’enfance en commun et partage les souvenirs avec plaisir.
5 jours d’exposition – un marathon! Les visiteurs viennent de partout dans le monde et nous sommes très encouragés voir que nous pouvons susciter l’enthousiasme, qu’un visage s’éclaire d’un grand sourire. Bien sur La Fourme d’Ambert fait son tour de magie – « Je suis bluffé! » un reponse fréquente pour des personnes qui commence avec « je n’aime pas les vins doux ni le frommage » – c’est vraiment notre jeu favorit que d’associer notre « éclat » et la fourme d’Ambert.
Et justement, maintenant vous pouvez retrouver éclat au centre de Paris chez Jean Bernard AOC, 157 rue St Martin, 75003. Un bar à vin et caviste avec un air des années 50 qui se trouve dans un vrai bijou de quartier. Les ateliers d’art et d’artisans frotte contre les bars et restaurants dans les petites ruelles – allez les decouvrir!
Ou alors toute la gamme vous attend à Saint Denis chez Argile et Vin, 46 rue de la boulangerie, Saint Denis. Une galerie d’art plein des surprises dirigé par Franciade, une céramiste et Jean, son mari et passioné de vin.
Et encore plus loin, en Belgique, chez Miss Cheese and Mr Wine, Alsemberg, Vlaams Brabant – notre premier caviste hors La France! Spécialistes en vins et fromages de qualité, le visiteur epicurean trouvera ces plaisirs.
Et merci aussi pour la visite de Rosemary George MW, une journaliste de vin anglaise reputée, qui est spécialiste des vins du Languedoc. Nous sommes toujours honorés d’ecouter les avis d’ experts.

More than 1200 exhibitors, from one person outfits to the big houses, housed in huge alleys as far as the eye can see – welcome to Vignerons Indépendants Porte de Versailles, Paris.
We could easily have felt small and lost in this huge hall, but again we are surrounded by welcoming « old hands » who encourage us with tales of their own first steps and progress. And when we see the loyalty of their clients, we undestand the enormity of the work we have in front of us.
And so, what a lovely surprise it was for us, to have our first day punctuated by visits from clients from Marseille that we had seen only the weekend before! And other « southern expatriates » who live today in Paris but keep their hearts in the south. The world is a small place and Pierre meets visitors with mutual childhood friends and shares memories with them.
5 days of exhibition – a marathon! The vsitors come from all over the world and we are encouraged to see that we can incite enthusiasm for our wines and bring a smile to light their faces. And of course La Fourme d’Ambert weaves her magic. « I’m stunned! » a frequent response from clients who start by saying that they like neither swet wine nor cheese. It really is our favourite game to show how the combination of our éclat with La Fourme d’Ambert rewards with a different taste sensation.
And now, we can give you new addresses where you will find our wines in Paris.
Jean-Bernard AOC is a wine bar and wine shop situated in a real Aladdin’s cave of a quarter right in the centre of Paris. 157 rue Saint Martin, 75003 is nestled amongst tiny alley streets full of artists and artisans, cafe’s and restaurants. The bar has a quirky 50’s feel to it with their own label bottles garnished with a bathing beauty and now éclat is in residence. Go and take a peek at the area!
Or you can find all four of our wines at Argile and Vin, 46 rue de la boulangerie, Saint Denis. An art gallery full of surprises, ceramic artist Franciade on the ground floor of the ancient walls of the house of masks and the cave run by Jean, her wine lover husband.
Further afield again, our first wine shop outside France – Miss Cheese and Mr Wine in Alsemberg, Vlaams Brabant, Belgium, also stock the four wines. Specialists in quality wines and cheeses, the epicurian visitor is sure to find his pleasure. Look out for their events…
And thank you also for the visit to our stand of Rosemary George MW, renowned writer and specialist in the wines of Languedoc, we are always happy to listen to the advice and opinion of experts and hope to share our progress with her when we bottle this year’s wine.