13 August 2013

Domaine Huet Vouvray Demi Sec

I asked a friend to talk about Dm. Huet Vouvray Demi Sec a bit since she knows the wine makers and I thought you might like to see the photos she has taken of the vineyard and winemakers! Enjoy!

1095: the vineyard
1102: Me with Hugo and Sarah Hwang, the Managing Director and President of the estate
0894: Le Haut Lieu
0889: Le Haut Lieu

Domaine Huet is known as one of, if not the, finest vineyard of Vouvray, producing extraordinary chenin blanc. The vineyard was first established by Victor Huet in 1928 after he returned from WWI and he and his wife fell in love with the house and the land. He decided to try his hand at winemaking, and the rest is history. His son, Gaston, became winemaker in 1937 and really built the Huet legacy. Le Haut Lieu was their first parcel, and produces much of their grand cru wines. They now have two others, Le Mont and Clos du Bourg, both of which also produce outstanding wines. Today the vineyard is owned by Anthony Hwang and run by two of his children, Hugo and Sarah. They are wonderful, energetic, and hard-working young people who are passionate about the estate and its wines. We've had the pleasure of getting to know them over the last several years, and see them whenever we're in Amboise (which is about 20 minutes outside of Vouvray). Visiting the vineyard is always a joy, and we always walk (or usually ride since we go on our bikes) away with wine. The photo of me with Sarah and Hugo is at their "Portes Ouvertes" or Open Doors, which is always held in May. They present and serve about 25 or 30 of a variety of their wines and vintages, served with local treats that complement them, and often have an art display. It's truly a treat! One of our favorites is the 2007 demi-sec, a beautifully smooth wine that is neither too sweet nor too dry. Sometimes the label "demi-sec" scares us off, but it shouldn't…and this is not just dessert wine. It's beautiful with goat cheese or appetizers with cheese in them (although the French would never have a cheese plate as an appetizer). It's also lovely with chicken with a cream or other sauce. It can also offset the heat of Thai or other spicy food. We did a Mexican dinner in France for about 20 friends, including Sarah and Hugo, and served this with it, with rave reviews from our French friends. It's also fabulous after dinner, with a strawberry shortcake, an almond cake, or a crème brûlée. So buy some and enjoy…I can't wait to tell Sarah and Hugo that we were actually able to buy some and hope to get more.

Thanks Sandra!!

09 August 2013

Beer Mustard!

We hosted a "Make your Own Beer Mustard" workshop last night at The Market during our Thursday tasting. Thanks so much to all that stopped by and I hope you had fun trying some new brews! I will apologize for a bit of disorganization on my part...John has shared his sore throat and summer cold with me. (He says I caught it from the dog :))

Here's a re-cap of the recipe and tasting.

BEER MUSTARD for Preserving

1/2 cup Coleman's Dry Mustard
1/3 cup Beer (robust style works the best)
1 Tablespoon Mustard Seeds, black or yellow
Salt & Pepper to taste

Choose to add 1/2 cup Horseradish for spicy mustard or 1/2 cup brown sugar

Mix all ingredients together until smooth. If you will be hot water bath canning, add 1 teaspoon white vinegar to mixture. Fill sterilized jars with a 1/2 inch headspace. Wipe rims attach lids and finger tighten rings. If canning; process in hot water bath canner for 10 minutes. If freezing, freeze up to 1 year.

The mixture really needs to sit a month to mellow and allow flavors to meld.