August 6, 2001

Itinerary   Decent night’s sleep, but I’m getting a sore throat.  Breakfast was similar to the last couple of days.  We left for Chateau de Beaucastel on a bus with good AC and a better driver.  On the way I saw several herons, some magpies, and an owl.  We also got a great look at Mt. Ventoux  We stopped in Avignon near the Palais des Papes and had 2 hours to do the tourist thing.  We got some munchies (pizza and quiche), bought some nice table linens, and I got a guitar CD from a local musician, which I had him autograph.  We also found a pharmacie and got some more cough syrup.  We left Avignon and stopped at Chateau de La Nerthe unannounced, but were told “Eet ees not possible” to have an early tasting, so we left and ended up at Beaurenard, where we were treated to some first class French attitude.  And the wines were lousy!  From there it was off to Beaucastel where we were greeted by “Mike”.  He gave us a great talk and tour, then led us to the tasting area.  As we tasted through the offerings, Mike waxed most passionately about the wines, the vineyards, and Beaucastel’s winemaking philosophy.  I really enjoyed my time there.  No wines were offered for sale, but we had the chance to taste a couple whites and some since grape components of their CNdP, as well as a final product in the bottle.

· '00 CdR white 
· '00 CNdP white 
· Cinsault 
· Counoise 
· Grenache 
· Syrah 
· Mourvedre 
· '86 CNdP

· Variety of Terrines 
· Carrot Soup with Orange 
· Salmon Fillet with Mashed Potatoes and Marinated Tomatoes 
· Lamb Loin with Lentils and Potato Gratin 
· Cheese Cart 
· Pear Strudel

· '96 Robert Gibourg Volnay 
· '97 red (don't remember which one, selected by Steve S)

Jimmie figuring out where we are in Avignon Palais des Papes (Pope's Palace)
Avignon Bridge Jimmie waiting for departure time
Vineyards across the valley Vineyards of Chateau de La Nerthe
Vineyards of Chateau de La Nerthe So many wineries; so little time
'becca at Chateau Beaurenard Jimmie at Chateau Beaurenard
Mat checking out the barrels (Beaurenard) Fermenting tanks at Chateau Beaurenard
Bottling line at Chateau Beaurenard A few bottles of Chateau Beaurenard
This says it all!
Vineyards at Chateau Beaucastel Mt. Ventoux from Chateau Beaucastel
Olives! Our group at Chateau Beaucastel
Chateau Beaucastel Grapes at Chateau Beaucastel
Mike of Chateau Beaucastel Jimmie at home in Chateau Beaucastel's cellars
Mike pouring our tasting wines Back to the bus (Bob of Santa Barbara)
Hospice du Rhone