February 11, 2013 |
After a Sunday morning hike in Solstice Canyon, a small group of friends and I ended up at a fellow hiker's Malibu house for lunch. While we nibbled on bruschetta topped with ricotta and roasted red peppers, Michalene got busy in the kitchen, steaming clams with garlic and white wine and boiling the pasta. The wonderful aromas swirled over the entire house. Normally, you might drink a crisp, dry Italian white with pasta with clams, but we tried opening a Mâcon-Villages from Henri Perrusset in Burgundy (imported by Kermit Lynch)
December 1, 2012 |
In Bordeaux, Cabernet Franc plays second fiddle, adding a touch of spice to Cabernet Sauvignon blends. But in the Loire Valley, it shines on its own in Chinon and Bourgueil. Here's a lovely Chinon from Château de Coulaine, an estate that dates to 1300. Etienne de Bonnaventure farms his Chinon vineyards organically and vinifies his wines simply and naturally using indigenous yeasts. The wine is a rich ruby red, its intense dark berry flavor laced with Chinon's characteristic spice and pepper.
June 23, 2012 |
The 2011 Domaine de Reuilly Pinot Gris Rosé is an elegant summer-weight wine. Hooray for summer and rosé and this bargain Reuilly Pinot Gris from the eastern Loire Valley. This rosé made entirely from Pinot Gris is quite unique year after year, but in 2011 estate owner Denis Jamain made a particularly good example. The color of pale onion skin, it's aromatic but not overblown, crisp and minerally. It's an elegant summer-weight wine that I can't wait to open as an apéritif with a bowl of olives and toasted almonds, with an omelet aux fines herbes or mussels steamed in a splash of the wine with shallots and lots of black pepper.
November 10, 2011 |
The minute I tasted this terrific Pouilly Fumé from Régis Minet, I wanted oysters. Not just a half dozen but at least a couple dozen, chilled, naked and preferably Kumomotos. Minet's old-vine Sauvignon Blanc picks up a stony minerality and bracing acidity that would be perfect with most things from the raw bar. You can taste lime and grapefruit, too, in this intense, nervous white. It's also a fine value for a wine of this quality. Region: Loire Valley Price: From $18 to $23 Style: Lively What it goes with: Oysters and clams on the half shell, crab, seafood paella.
August 27, 2011
On a recent trip to France, we spent several days at Le Manoir St. Thomas in Amboise. The friendly staff and owners of the 12th century manor house made us feel at home, and it gave us a great base for exploring the Loire Valley. Le Manoir St. Thomas, 1, Mail St. Thomas, Amboise; http://www.manoir-saint-thomas.com . Rooms from about $208. Bob and Joan Faulkner Manhattan Beach
HOME & GARDEN
May 18, 2011 |
"Project Runway" host and executive producer Heidi Klum and her husband, singer-songwriter Seal, have listed their Beverly Hills Post Office-area estate at $6.9 million. Described as a "21st century Loire Valley chateau," the house sits behind gates on more than 4 acres. Features include a glass-enclosed wine vault in the dining room, a wood-paneled library and a master suite with dual bathrooms and walk-in closets and a sitting area with a two-sided fireplace. The more than 9,000 square feet of living space include six bedrooms and 91/2 bathrooms.