I would venture to say that anyone that has a family, in the past six months has probably been a scofflaw, especially here in Michigan. I was not designed to spend my time hiding in the basement and most people that I know were not either. There were times when we had to defy the law and visit relatives, especially if no one was ill or showed symptoms, though I am sure that a hangnail may have been on one or two of the lists. After surviving at home for three or more quarantines in a row, I think everyone was getting antsy and suffering from being “stir-crazy.” I mean there was a time, when it was illegal to have two people in the same car. We were defiant and broke the law at times, sometimes even my squeaky-clean and above the board Bride got together to do water-aerobics several times at her sister’s house, because she has an inground pool. She was even joined with other sisters and cousins; and I don’t think that any of them wore a mask in the pool, they were as guilty as Dr. Faucci attending a baseball game with friends and not socially distancing or wearing masks. There was even a couple of times when after the aerobics, an ad-hoc party would evolve. With ordering of pizzas and salads and other noshes of that caliber. There were times that I would drive over after the exercises and bring beverages for everyone to enjoy, because those that were in the pool earlier had worked up an appetite.
The first wine that I opened up for us to enjoy was Thierry Delauney “La Vignette” Rosé Touraine 2019 is from an estate that is twenty-one hectares situated in Pouille above the banks of the Cher, the very center of the appellation. The vineyards have been cultivated and tended by five generations of the same family and the first wines that were bottled at the Domaine was in 1971. Through the years they have worked to increase the quality and the reputation of the winery and in the process have also entered into the négociant trade. A Rosé wine from the Loire Valley, which is a major wine producing area that lives in the shadow of some of the other wine regions. One of the main reasons that this area is over shadowed, because all of the wines are more nuanced and delicate, instead of big in-your-face reds that so many of the wine critics prefer these days. The wine is made using Gamay, Cabernet Franc and Malbec (Cot). The fruit is harvested from across the Touraine and the wine is aged on fine lees in Stainless Steel. This wine had a pretty pink/salmon tint and the nose was red fruits, especially strawberries and very refreshing. The wine was well balanced with nice acidity and luscious finish that beckoned for another drink.
I also brought a red wine, because I knew that we would be having some good old-fashioned meat-lover’s traditional pizza pies, because of me. Chateau Juvenal “Les Ribes du Vallat” Ventoux 2017 is so named because the plots are distributed on the hillsides (the “ribes” in Provencal) which border the ditch (the “Vallat” in Provencal) which crosses the domain. In the spring, painters are known to set up their easels and paint different perspectives of the grounds, hence the artist and his easel on the label. Chateau Juvenal is a residence formed by a Provencal country house and an old farmhouse completely renovated and is called The Castle. The estate has five bedrooms and three lodgings with a classified 4-star tourist accommodation rating and also offers a swimming pool, a wellness center and a wine estate as well as producing olive oil in an ancestral method. In 2001, Bernard and Anne-Marie Forestier bought the Provencal castle in order to restore the vineyard and open up a gite; a gite (so that I will keep your from looking it up, is a specific type of holiday accommodation, a home available for rent and they are usually fully furnished and equipped for self-catering. Chateau Juvenal is located in Ventoux and until 2009 it was known as Cotes de Ventoux when the appellation was completed for the harvest of 1973. It is in the far southeast of the Southern Rhone and abuts Provence. Bernard and Anne-Marie Forestier teamed up with the Alban family, wine makers for three generations to build the wine cellar and to offer new wines. They have gone the organic route to create the wines. The wine is a blend of seventy percent Grenache and thirty percent Syrah from plots located at the foot of the hillside (ribes), on the edge of the ditch (vallat). The wine immediately shows the fruit forward sweetness of the Grenache and it is balanced with the peppery notes of the Syrah. It may have been a bit overpowering for the commercial pizzas, but what the hell, it was good.