(If we were watching Johnny Carson, he might say….. name a King, a mustard with zing, and a wine that will make you sing!) O.M.G., the south of France is totally, how shall I say, MAGNIFIQUE! (Which is slightly better than magnificent.) Our wonderfully serene cruise has brought the Countess and I through the heart of Burgundy, gliding past some of the most spectacular (and valuable) vineyards on earth! Yesterday was spent in the thoroughly charming village of Beaune. (The historic center of the dukes of Burgundy.) Not to brag, but I met the descendants of the Duke of Earl and the Duke of Snyder. Believe it or not, they walk around town using stilts! This may be where we get the term “put up your dukes!” (I was going to go with “uppity,” but I changed my mind.)
After purchasing a few gallons of mustard, we were driven to Chateau Pommard (Yep, that Chateau Pommard!) and were treated to a gourmet luncheon, tour of the vineyard and cellars, and a marvelous wine tasting experience. Oddly enough, the wine director recognized me, or thought he did, as “Monsieur Stephen” the famous American author. (I later discovered that he thought I was Stephen King!) Sensing a golden opportunity to pull the wool over his eyes (yeah, they raised some sheep, too) I convinced him that I was Stephen King…. and he brought out the “good stuff” for us to sip. (The REALLY good stuff!) A wonderful wine that I managed to swallow in vast quantities without getting drunk! From what I remember, we all had a great time and eagerly await our next chateau visit. (Which happens to be tomorrow!)
When we crawled back on board our vessel, it was time for the Captain’s Dinner. (Think caviar, pate, saddle of veal, souffle, and…… more wine!) Only because people are starving in China and India (according to my mother) I forced myself to consume a huge portion of the above treats, but I limited myself to one liter of champagne and one liter of wine. (By the way, “liter” is the French word for bottle.) God, I’m really starting to love these villages. What Gauls they have!
Well, mademoiselles et monsieurs, I must run…. the fascinating city of Lyon awaits! (We just dropped anchor.) Looks like another sunny, warm day. We are docked in the heart of the city, and from what I can see, the French have done it again. Truly remarkable!
Best wishes and love to all,
Stephan Yanoff, a/k/a The Marquis de Sade (isfied)