Saturday, January 21, 2017

"Savoie"ring Time with Family #FrenchWinophiles

Jill from L'Occasion is hosting this month's French Winophiles and invited us to visit the Savoie region.  You can see her announcement post here.

I have been a part of this group now for a while and I wish I could tell you that now I know a lot about French wines but I would be lying.  The only thing I know now that I didn't know before is that there are TONS of French wines from all regions of France and each region is well known for either the grape variety or the method of wine making or both.  Oh....and I learned that I LOVE French wines.

Living in Michigan, it is not always easy to find the wines from the regions we are exploring.  Such was the case for this month's region, Savoie.  I wasn't having any luck locating wine from this region.  I do have a wine store in Detroit that carries a lot of wines from all over the world but it is an hour drive and I wasn't sure I was going to make it down there, especially since I had a trip planned to California to visit my brother.

I mentioned this on the group page and several of the other bloggers recommended that while I was in the San Francisco area, I might want to try K&L wines.  As luck would have it, the residential units in which I was staying was only a few blocks from the K& L store.  I went in and was helped by John who was very knowledgeable and set me up with not one, but two bottles  from the Savoie Region.

The first bottle he led me to was the white Apremont.  This is what K&L have to say in their writ up about this wine.
"2015 Veronique Anne Perret Vin de Savoie Apremont : The village of Apremont once sat in the shadow of a great mountain. In 1248 that mountain collapsed, destroying, everything in its path. Fortunately, the mountain itself was made of limestone which is some of the best geological material for growing grapes and the site is littered with limestone scree (broken rock fragments). The grape of choice for the region is Jacquère and some of the best comes from this village. Like most wines from Savoie, the Perret has hallmark aromas of citrus and lemongrass with a touch of peach as well."
This bottle was attractively priced at $12.99 which made it possible for me to also purchase a bottle of the red from the Savoie region.

John explained that red wines were harder to come by in the Savoie region but that they were not unheard of.  This bottle of 2014 Domaine Fabien Trosset Mondeuse Avalanche, Vin de Savoie-Arbin was priced at $19.99 a bottle.  John told me that it would be a lighter wine for a red, more on the order of a pinot noir but with more spice.  I picked up a bottle of this as well. 

I was leaving the San Francisco area the following day and heading south to my brother's home near San Luis Obispo.  I decided I would make a dinner for him and his family who all live nearby and we could do a wine tasting at that time.

While driving down I was trying to think of a meal that I could serve that would please everyone. One of my nieces and a great niece are both gluten intolerant.  My other nephew and his wife work very hard at eating cleanly and healthily.  My sister in law loves chicken dishes but is not crazy about seafood.  My brother loves seafood and beef.  I wanted to serve both wines with this dinner but since there would be 17 of us having dinner I didn't think a sit down meal with different courses for each wine was feasible.

I finally decided to make 3 different stir fry meals and serve them buffet style.  I made Celery Steak, Chicken Pad Thai and Garlic Shrimp with Green Beans.  I used coconut aminos and rice noodles for the gluten intolerants.  Brown Rice and lots of veggies for the health conscious.  Different meats for different tastes and put out both wines allowing people to take what they wanted.

When I was setting out the food, my brother exclaimed "My gosh, Wendy, perhaps I should call some more people from the neighborhood and invite them over to eat some of this".  I just smiled and kept putting out food.  When we were all done eating there was enough left for one person to have a light lunch.  The food was a huge hit.

Some of us drank white, some of us drank red.  I drank both.  White with my dinner and red after dinner as we sat and visited.  I wish I could talk to you about the pairings but, to be honest, I didn't pay much attention.  I liked the wines, especially the red, and I didn't notice anything adverse as I was eating and drinking so I am going to say it was a successful pairing.  

I really enjoyed K&L wine shop.  I had a wonderful time with my California family and my 2 nieces and great niece that I brought with me for this visit.  I had fun taking over my sister in law's kitchen, not only for this meal but for the one I made the following night after we visited the coast and stopped by the fishmonger on the pier in Avilla Beach.

I am home now and will be starting my hunt for wines from the Corsica region which is where we are exploring in February.  Make sure you stop back and see what I have learned or learn from the others who are much more knowledgeable than I.  In fact, why don't you start right now and learn all about the wines of Savoie.  That's where I'm headed.......


  1. I am not at all a knowledgeable person when it comes to wine. I just know what tastes good and what doesn't! Your California feast sounded wonderful!

  2. What a wonderful way to celebrate Savoie! Loved reading this.

  3. I really love this story! All the elements of travel, family, food, wine, connections & learning. I'm sure many people would just decide it's too much work to plan all of it but you make it so enjoyable. A top-notch memory for all, life is so good! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Glad you enjoyed K&L Wine Merchants Wendy! I'm a frequent flier at the Redwood City store about 45 minutes south of SF. Sounds like a great dinner with your family! Cheers!

    1. Thanks for the suggestion Martin. Wish I had a K&L in Michigan

  5. What a wonderful post, Wendy. And I have to echo Martin's sentiment about K & L. We are huge fans!

    1. I wish we had a wine store like that somewhere near us. Would make my life much easier LOL


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