Château Haut-Brion in Aquitaine

12 September 2016 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Bon appétit Reading Time:  20 minutes

Château Haut-Brion © flickr.com - BillBl/cc-by-2.0

Château Haut-Brion © flickr.com – BillBl/cc-by-2.0

Château Haut-Brion is a French wine, rated a Premier Cru Classé (First Growth), produced in Pessac just outside the city of Bordeaux. It differs from the other wines on the list in its geographic location in the north of the wine-growing region of Graves. Of the five first growths, it is the only wine with the Pessac-Léognan appellation and is in some sense the ancestor of a classification that remains the benchmark to this day. In addition to the grand vin, Haut-Brion produces a red second wine. Formerly named Château Bahans Haut-Brion, beginning with the 2007 vintage, it was renamed Le Clarence de Haut Brion. The vineyard also produces a dry white wine named Château Haut-Brion Blanc, with a limited release of the second dry white wine, Les Plantiers du Haut-Brion, renamed La Clarté de Haut-Brion for the 2008 vintage. Since 2003, Domaine Clarence Dillon’s daughter company, Clarence Dillon Wines, has also released the Bordeaux brand wine named Clarendelle. The annual production ranges from 10,000 to 12,000 cases (900 to 1,080 hL) of the red grand vin Château Haut-Brion, and from 650 to 850 cases (59 to 76 hL) of Château Haut-Brion Blanc. Of the second wines, the red Le Clarence de Haut-Brion previously named Château Bahans Haut-Brion, has a production of 5,000 to 7,000 cases (450 to 630 hL), and the white La Clarté de Haut-Brion, previously named Les Plantiers du Haut-Brion, has a production of 1,000 to 1,200 cases (90 to 108 hL).   read more…

Theme Week Gascony – Pau

27 March 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  6 minutes

Boulevard des Pyrénées © Flo641/cc-by-sa-3.0

Boulevard des Pyrénées © Flo641/cc-by-sa-3.0

Pau is a commune on the northern edge of the Pyrenees, capital of the Pyrénées-Atlantiques Département in Aquitaine. It was also the capital of the historical Béarn Province. It forms the communauté d’agglomération of Pau-Pyrénées with 13 neighbouring communes to carry out local tasks together. Place Clemenceau, the heart of the downtown area, is the site of many public festivals, great shopping, and a beautiful fountain.   read more…

Theme Week Gascony – Dax

25 March 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  5 minutes

Bullring entrance © CTHOE/cc-by-sa-3.0

Bullring entrance © CTHOE/cc-by-sa-3.0

Dax is a commune in Aquitaine in south-western France, sub-prefecture of the Landes department. It is also a market town, former bishopric and busy local centre, especially for the Chalosse area.   read more…

Theme Week Gascony

23 March 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Bon voyage, Theme Weeks Reading Time:  6 minutes

Château de Castelmore in Lupiac, birthplace of Comte d’Artagnan © Jibi44/cc-by-2.5

Château de Castelmore in Lupiac, birthplace of Comte d’Artagnan © Jibi44/cc-by-2.5

Gascony is an area of southwest France that was part of the “Province of Guyenne and Gascony” prior to the French Revolution. The region is vaguely defined and the distinction between Guyenne and Gascony is unclear; sometimes they are considered to overlap, and sometimes Gascony is considered a part of Guyenne. Most definitions put Gascony east and south of Bordeaux.   read more…

Bergerac on the Dordogne river

25 December 2014 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  5 minutes

Bergerac on the Dordogne river © Swanzack

Bergerac on the Dordogne river © Swanzack

Bergerac is a commune and a sub-prefecture of the Dordogne department in southwestern France. Bergerac offers some of the finest wines in the Bordeaux region. It has 12 recognized wine AOCs (Appellations d’origine contrôlée) The drainage is excellent as a result of its proximity to the Dordogne River. The town has an important tourist industry and features a tobacco museum, in which, unlike in all the other museums, no smoking is allowed. Bergerac is served by the Bergerac Dordogne Périgord Airport. Bergerac has an SNCF station with regular services to Bordeaux and Sarlat-la-Canéda.   read more…

Pauillac en Médoc

21 September 2013 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Bon appétit Reading Time:  6 minutes

Château Batailley © CGC 1855

Château Batailley © CGC 1855

Pauillac is a commune in the Gironde department, Aquitaine, Médoc region in southwestern France close to Bordeaux. The town of Pauillac is the largest in the Médoc, with a population of over 5000. Pauillac is somewhat more elevated than the surrounding area, rising to a peak of nearly 30 metres above sea-level in the region of Château Pontet-Canet. The soil is gravelly, as with most of the Haut-Médoc. The forest to the west shelters the vines from the Atlantic winds.   read more…

Sarlat-la-Canéda in the Dordogne

6 August 2013 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  5 minutes

Town Hall © Stefi123/cc-by-sa-3.0

Town Hall © Stefi123/cc-by-sa-3.0

Sarlat-la-Canéda or simply Sarlat, is a commune in the Dordogne department in Aquitaine in southwestern France. Sarlat is one of the most attractive and alluring towns in southwestern France. Numerous visitors – especially from northern Europe (the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, etc.) – come on holiday to Sarlat and the lovely region surrounding it and some have settled here permanently. The months of July and August are traditionally the haute saison (high season) for visitors.   read more…

Périgueux in Aquitaine

18 July 2013 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  < 1 minute

Town Hall © Père Igor/cc-by-sa-3.0

Town Hall © Père Igor/cc-by-sa-3.0

Périgueux is a commune in the Dordogne department in Aquitaine in southwestern France. Périgueux is the prefecture of the départment and was the capital of the historic County of Périgord. The city has 30,000 inhabitants and is the biggest city in the Dordogne department. River Isle flow from east to west through the city.   read more…

Bayonne in Basque Country

6 December 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  7 minutes

The Quay of the Admiral Jauréguiberry and the Cathedral © Daniel Villafruela

The Quay of the Admiral Jauréguiberry and the Cathedral © Daniel Villafruela

Bayonne is a city and commune in south-western France at the confluence of the Nive and Adour rivers, in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department, of which it is a sub-prefecture. It belongs to both vernacular cultural regions of Basque Country and Gascony. Together with nearby Anglet, Biarritz, Saint-Jean-de-Luz, and several smaller communes, Bayonne forms an urban area with 178,965 inhabitants at the 1999 census, 40,078 of whom lived in the city of Bayonne proper (44,300 as of 2004). The communes of Bayonne, Biarritz, and Anglet have joined into an intercommunal entity called the Communauté d’agglomération de Bayonne-Anglet-Biarritz (BAB). Bayonne has the longest tradition of bull-fighting in France and there is a ring beyond the walls of Grand Bayonne. The season runs between July and September. Bull-fighting is part of the five-day Fêtes de Bayonne which starts on the first Wednesday of August and attracts people from across the Basque Country and beyond. Parades, music, dance, fireworks, food and drink all feature in the celebrations. Soon after the Assumption festival of 15 August heralds a few more days of bull-fights.   read more…

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