This was our 7th year at the Fete du Bordeaux - a fantastic event sponsored by Applejack liquors.
This year, we went with Diana, Amy, and Dan - and it didn't snow! We are crediting Dan and Amy for that.
The evening started with a champagne reception at the Westin hotel, with a sentimental overlook. The area outside the window
has changed a little over the years, but it is one of the places Mike took me on our first date, October 11,1993.
...and as my thanks, I accidentally broke his sunglasses. He never lets me forget...
Specifically, this area:
This year, Applejack got all fancy and added coat check tickets for the coat check.
Peeking inside the dining room...
Here is the full menu with my notes:
Our table! As Diana would say, it's pinky up! 4 sets of flatware...
Dan, Amy, and Mike:
Amy, Mike, me, and Diana:
Another look at the table setting:
Really loved the little cactus centerpiece:
They added a nice display of all the wines:
"A First Great Classified Growth since 1954, Chateau Figeac's hallmark characteristics of elegance, freshness, and harmony are recognized the whole world over. Figeac is a very ancient property. In the 2nd century, the Figeacus family gave its name to the estate. Traces of this Gallo-Roman villa still exist today. Chateau Figeac has belonged to the family of the present owners since 1892. Thierry Manoncourt, later assisted by his wife, Marie-France, began restructuring the vineyard in 1947 in order to make Figeac one of the greatest wines of Bordeaux. Today, Figeac is the largest estate of Saint-Emilion, covering 54 hectares (133 acres). Besides its 40 hectares (99 acres) of vines, a variety of landscapes combine to for a balance in nature, today known as bio diversity. Figeac has large areas of space, which add to the majesty of the place and allow the flora and fauna to flourish. Figeac has an outstanding terroir consisting of three gravelly rises. In keeping with the nature of this soil, Figeac is the Right Bank estate with the highest percentage of Cabernet. This atypical combination accounts for wines that are elegant, long-lived, and extremely well-reputed.
Today, Madame Thierry Manoncourt and Hortense Idoine Manoncourt (a graduate of the Anger Ecole Superieure d'Agriculture) are actively involved in the running of the estate and ensuring the continuity of the family ownership. They symbolize Chateau Figeac's spirit of long-term commitment and excellence, guaranteeing the continuation of the Figeac style created by Thierry Manoncourt (1917 - 2010). The Manoncourt family today is supported by highly skilled wine growing teams and are careful to preserve its spirit and excellence that have always been central to the way this unique property is run every day.
Chateau La Conseillante
The name La Conseillante first appeared in the middle of the 18th century, when the influential Catherine Conseillan, the owner of the property at that time, decided to give her name to it. In 1871, the Nicolas family acquired La Conseillante, whose surface area (12 hectares/30ars) and vineyard plots have remained the same since that time, which is a unique achievement. Since February 1, 2010, the La Conseillante Family Board has been made up of three members: Doctor Bertrand Nicolas, joint-managing director since 2001, Jean-Valmy Nicolas, joint-managing director since 2010, and Henri Nicolas. Today, the 5th generation of the Nicolas family manages the estate, symbolising the continuing committment and attachment of the family to this great growth. The Nicolas heirs are clearly identified on each bottle by the initials "LN" on the label at the centre of a shield within a silver-edged border whose four corners are sloped. The violet-colored bottle capsule evokes the charasmatic aroma of the wine. Thesepackaging features, first chosen back in 1871 by the Nicolas brothers, remain elegant and yet modern even today.
For the 145 years that it has existed, Chateau La Conseillante has thus benefited from long-lasting unwavering support from the Nicolas family, which has helped it to express the best of its terroir, which is one of the greatest in Pomerol.
Chateaux Lynch Bages and Ormes de Pez
In the heart of the Medoc on the banks of the estuary, Pauillac (Gironde, France) has been the true birthplace of Grand Cru Classe wines since 1855.The Lynch-Bages vineyards are planted across 100 hectares. These vineyards enjoy a mild climate, homogenous geology, and a tolography of well-defined outcrops in the South and South-West of the town. These factors all contribute to bringing Lynch Bages' soils their warmth and excellent natural drainage towards the river, which ensures optimum water supply to the vines. Although there are records of the Bages territory as far back as the 16th century, the history of wine production in the area really began in the 18th century.
Lynch-Bages is without a doubt the flagship of the Domaines Jean-Michel Cazes, but it was not the first domaine to belong to the Cazes family. This title goes to Ormes de Pez, which was purchased by Jean-Charles Cazes in the wake of World War II. At the time of the French Revolution, the current property was called Domaine de Pez (meaning "peace" in the local dialect). As for the elms ("ormes") that have appeared on the bottle labels since 2003, they grew on the grounds of the domaine until this mythical variety of tree ceased to grow in Europe in the 1950s.
Owners of Lynch Bages and Ormes de Pez for generations, the Cazes family has spread its viticultural wings and developed a model brandof tourism that is steeped in a tradition of hospitality. from the Ariege mountains to the vineyards of the Medoc and elsehwhere, the story is about jouneys. Today, Jean-Charles Caes, the great-grandson of the first Jean-Charles, is heading these family-run estates.
Chateaus Langoa Barton and Leoville Barton
Hugh Barton bought Chateau Langoa Barton in 1821 and Chateau Leoville in 1826. Anthony Barton and his daughter Lillian, respectively 6th and 7th generation after Hugh, now run the two estates. Ensuring the future of these great properties, Lillian's daughter is an oenologist who is working at another family estate and her son is finishing up his studies in wine and business. Ultimately, they will continue this long family tradition.
Chateau Langoa was classified a 3rd growth in the 1855 classification and Leoville Barton was classified a 2nd growth. Production and vinification are traditional, but modifications to the reception of the harvest have been made to ensure the continued high quality of both wines. Their style is typical Saint Julien with emphasis on elegance and finesse rather than high extraction and high tannins, but this does not prevent them from having a long life expectancy.
Owners from each of the Chateaus were at the dinner to talk about their wines. Jim, the owner of Applejack (through marriage, as
he would be quick to tell you about the benefits of "marrying well"), introduces the event. At our table is Lillian Barton.
The view from our table included my hubby's favorite green building:
Lillian Barton speaks about her vineyards and the 2013 vintage in general.
Time for the appetizer!
(Warm Scallops and Lobster Dariole with Sauce Americaine and Chives citrus Beurre Blanc)
Next Course: Pan Seared Veal Sweet Breads and Wild Mushrooms, Feuillete with Truffled Leeks:
The next Chateau owner to speak was Marielle Cazaux from Chateau La Conseillante. This was the first time her wines were
featured in the Fete du Bordeaux.
Of candles and cacti
The next speaker was Hortense Manoncourt Idoine, from Chateau Figeac. Hortense was at our table last year, and we were
glad to get an opportunity to chat with her again this year. (She stopped by to say hi!)
Main course: Grilled Buffalo Striploin, Bordelaise Sauce, Roquefort Potato Gratin and Glazed Tarragon Baby Carrots.
Jim introduces the last speaker, Jean-Charles Cazes, from Lynch Bages. Poor guy - he gets picked on a lot by Jim (who does like going
skiing with him). Jean-Charles says he can take it because he is the youngest of four siblings.
Dan, Amy, and Mike:
More food? Assortment of high country cheeses, nuts, and jams served with walnut and dried fruit bread.
Next set of wines
A round of applause for all the chateaus! Jim from Applejack,
Lillian Barton from Chateaus Langoa Barton and Leoville Barton,
Jean-Charles Cazes from Chateaux Lynch Bages and Ormes de Pez,
Marielle Cazaux from Chateau La Conseillante, and
Hortense Manoncourt Idoine from Chateau Figeac.
Jim also introduced and thanked our chef, Jean-Luc Voegele:
Time for dessert: Vanilla Bean Pana Cotta with Carmelized Pineapple, Almond Crunch, Chocolate Truffle, and Raspberry Coulis
Dan, Amy, Mike, and Diana:
One last look outside the dining room...
Last updated 25Jan2016