This week I was down in Geneva to sign copies of Cheese: Slices of Swiss Culture at Helen Stubbs’s delightful little shoebox of a bookshop, OffTheShelf, staying overnight with friends in nearby Nyon. While waiting for the train back to Basel, I wandered down the rue de la Gare and found no fewer than three… Continue reading Papet Vaudois: an irresistible Swiss sausage, leek, potato and cream combo
“Pinot needs constant care and attention. You know? And in fact it can only grow in these really specific little tucked away corners of the world. And, and only the most patient and nurturing of growers can do it, really. Only somebody who really takes the time to understand Pinot’s potential can then coax it… Continue reading A Taste of Pinot Noir
Kris Lloyd, cheese maker at Woodside Cheese Wrights up in them thar Adelaide Hills has won (again) a gold medal at this year’s World Cheese Awards. This time it was her Vigneron (pictured above), an oozy, washed rind, goat’s milk cheese wrapped in vine leaves, that walked off with the honours.
Okay, time for a quick and dirty geography lesson (with apologies to my German readers): Baden-Württemberg is the German Land (state) just across the Rhine from us in Alsace. It’s a prosperous place, home of Daimler, Porsche, Zeiss and a whole bunch of Mittelstand companies, backbone of the German economy. Northerners come down here to… Continue reading Württemberg Wines: Worth a Detour
Plenty of people in Alsace – myself included – have a sort of emotional investment in the Auberge de l’Ill. It’s there, within easy reach, for when we feel a birthday or an anniversary celebration coming on, or just for a classy, companionable lunch. It’s a bit like having a much-loved Granny nearby. She lives… Continue reading Is the Auberge de l’Ill Over the Hill?
The sloe (Prunus spinosa) is a prickly beast. In order to brave the dangers of picking its bloomy fruit, it helps to understand the wonders of sloe gin. Faithfully brewed in the pantries of English country houses since Victorian times, this wonderful drink (known in our family, and doubtless many others, as ‘sluggins’) is a… Continue reading Time to Make Sloe Gin
Every year in early November, CIVA (Alsace’s professional wine association) invites the region’s winegrowers to present their Grand Cru wines at the Château de Kientzheim near Colmar. If you’re anywhere in the neighbourhood today, don’t miss this great opportunity to taste Grand Cru wines from the length and breadth of the Route des Vins and… Continue reading Présentation et Dégustation de Grands Crus, Château de Kientzheim, Alsace