Last Sunday afternoon, our friends Susan and Simon, two Australians who've been living in the area for about five years now, stopped by for a short visit. S & S operate a business called Loire Valley Time Travel, offering guided tours in a beautiful 1950s vintage Citroën traction avant. You can read about it and reserve a tour here.
S & S were kind enough to bring us a bottle of a very nice Vouvray wine when they came by. Vouvray is a wine village on the Loire River just east of Tours, a short hour's drive from Saint-Aignan. Vouvray wines are whites made exclusively with the Chenin Blanc grape, in a range of styles from dry to sweet and still to sparkling. You can read about Château Gaudrelle on the blog that S & S author, Days on the Claise.
This Vouvray was a 2007 vintage — that's pretty venerable by Loire Valley standards (or any other standard, I guess). Age is a good thing when it comes to wine, of course, provided it's the right kind of wine, like this one. The label says you can keep it for 8 to 10 years, and it will gain in complexity and refinement. I enjoyed the delicious Château Gaudrelle with my birthday feast on Wednesday. Thanks, S & S.
I served my birthday lunch in this 50+-year-old dish that my mother gave me years ago.
It was made in Louisville, Kentucky, and decorated with what could be a Loire Valley theme.
Meanwhile, Walt and I drove up to Blois yesterday to see if we could inspect a new kitchen stove that we are interested in. No luck. We had actually planned to go to Tours, which is a longer drive from Saint-Aignan, but then Walt saw on a web site that the store that sells the stove we wanted to see does not have a floor model we could look at. For that, you have to drive four hours over to Nantes, in the west, or four hours to Châlon-sur-Saône, in Burgundy, east of us. No way.
Here's the kitchen stove we are thinking about buying. It has all the features we want, including a rotisserie.
Other friends of ours have a stove that might be a good one for us. We hope to go inspect and measure that one next week chez eux and then make a decision. We may end up having to order a kitchen stove sight-unseen and hope for the best. For a $1000 purchase, that's a little nervous-making.