29, 2009 Riquewihr
Another pretty day. No agenda. We drove south to Orschwihr.
Parked and looked about. Walked into the Chateau d'Orschwihr
winery. I have had their wine and liked it, so it seemed like
a good idea to try some more. The winemaker, Hubert was there
to take us through many wines. Perfect English, very gracious,
very familiar with new world wines, too. We started with a cremant
and moved onto the drys and then the stickies. We came out with
5 wines (we had to stop 'cause we only have 24 slots. Oh- for
some reason, very kind, but Holger brought us 3 bottles of Bordeaux,
so we gotta get that home, too. Thanks Holger.) It was time
for lunch. We headed south and passed by one of the Grand Cru
vineyards (got one at Ch. d'Orschwihr), Bollenberg.
In Wettolsheim, we went into the only spot open for lunch.
This is not a tourist stop, at all. The average age was probably
60. And by the name, Au Pied de Cochon, it is not suprising
that there are a lot of pigs about the place. More than Joe's
has gorillas. The owner made a point of coming up to us during
our meal and say hi. Everyone new each other in the place. Haut
cuisine? Non. But good country fare. Jeff and I both got the
menu du jour, starting with salad composee. Then Jeff had the
turkey in some sort of tomato sauce and I had the pizza bolognesa
(very like the tarte flambee, really). We had the pinot blanc
and a nice view of the local color. Oh, so many of the villages
sport a "village fleuri" sign. There are beautiful flowers everywhere,
along the streets, on the balconies ...
After lunch we walked about the village and went to Domaine
Albert Mann. The Times did a review last month. Since we new
we were coming to Alsace, I put it on my list. Very helpful
guy, who also spoke perfect English, took us through the wines.
They do many in screwcap. Yipee. If there was anything we wanted,
we were told to contact the only importer, from Pennysylvia,
and it shouldn't be a problem to get it. We walked out with
4 (only one screwcap. They export most to Australia/New Zealand),
one a pinot noir. Really.
Okay, now for the tourist bit. We drove south to Kintzheim
to La Montagne des Singes. This is a rehab/sanctury for the
Barbary Macaque. When you come in, they give you popcorn to
feed to the ones that want it.
Then we hightailed it to La Volerie des Aigles and caught the
last presentation of the Eagles, vultures, other birds of prey.
Very pretty seeing the birds flying about the castle.
Busy day. Finished with dinner in Riquewihr at Restaurant La
Dime. Got the small plates (no joke that was what was on the
menu). Jeff had only 2 sausage with choucroute and a green salad
(not a proper choucroute garni, but way enough) and I had the
galettes. This was two very big masses of shredded fried potatoes
topped with smoke pork product and munster cheese melted on
top. Oh a small salad. We shared an 06 pinot blanc VV from Freyburger
et Fils. Finished with a cherry tart and coffee. The waitress
warned us about the pits in the cherries. It took awhile for
me to get it, but I did know that they are left in, so that
helped. Not too late tonight, since we got a driving day tomorrow.
On to Champagne