I just saw off the last of my Cabernet Day friends. It’s been a real blast.
Seeing Local Winemakers
2010 was a really heartwarming Cabernet Day because it was one of the first events I organized to really get a great deal of support from local grape growers and winemakers. I was worried about 2011 because the slightly early harvest means a lot of winemakers are too busy to celebrate with us.
Some winemakers managed to send samples to be tasted in their absence. Notably, Gerard Bertrand sent a few bottles of his Cabernet Franc from Cigalus. That’s a big name in the region and I’m so excited that he decided to participate. And everybody enjoyed tasting the wine while watching high def video footage of the Corbieres vineyard from a helicopter! Bling bling. We’ve come a long way from #Cabernetday’s humble beginnings. ;D
I was also really pleased to see some winemakers tore themselves away from harvest to come in person. And they brought wines! Which is also very exciting because a lot of the growers around here are very shy and don’t like promoting their own wine. I’m very proud of them for coming out and braving a mostly anglophone audience to help share some of the Cabernet love.
Sharing with Anglophones
And it should be noted that this year was VERY English-speaking. Many English families retire to this region around Carcassonne, and I feel like they make up a really strong community that will enjoy a lot of local wines. Probably 90% of the attendees were speaking in English.
And I’ll add that almost everybody tonight was a wine novice, which is great. I was happy to have a very professional/wine trade crowd in 2010. But I’m even happier to share the joys of Cabernet with an amateur/novice crowd. People who just love life in the south of France and want to drink some good local wine.
We got to spend a lot of time sharing simple winemaker pleasures like “how to taste grapes for ripeness“. We all went out to the rows of Cabernet Sauvignon and tasted how the fruit was coming along. Chewed the skins and seeds separately. Talked about the importance of sugar and phenolics.
It was a lot of fun because we had a huge deal of neighborhood support. I’m getting too mushy, but it felt wonderful to have such a big block party here at O’Vineyards all around some Cabernet.
Lots of good friends!
2011″s Cab Day turned out very different from 2010 here in the Languedoc, so I’m anxious to hear everybody’s reports. I hope everybody has a piece of the magic we had here in the Languedoc Roussillon! Thanks again to Rick Bakas for organizing a wonderful Cab Day.
I just wrapped up my first day at the London International Wine Fair 2010. It was pretty awesome. You’ve got the usual schmoozing with winos you’ve met the world over. And somewhere amidst all the kissing hands and shaking babies (might be backwards, or maybe not) you get to taste a lot of wine.
One highlight was the launch announcement for the European Wine Blogger’s Conference in Austria this year. The guy presenting the wines, Willi Klinger, is a champion. He’s amazing. And the wines were neat too.
Also a couple big Languedoc moments which I’ll probably talk more about at Love That Languedoc. But Gerard Bertrand, Puech Haut and O’Vineyards (3 Languedoc properties) all made appearances in the Access Zone on DAY ONE of the LIWF. What that says to me is that the Languedoc is cutting edge on this thing called the Internet.
And of course, if you’d like to see me goofing around with Oscar Quevedo, drinking in the morning, here is the video from Catavino. It has an awkward, wholesome Sesame Street vibe. You know.. if Sesame Street did an episode on winos.
How do you convince a bunch of wine professionals to work with other winemakers? You do it with the help of other winemakers, obviously!
I’m going to share the stage with Oscar Quevedo of Oscar’s Wine in the Douro Valley of Portugal. We’re going to leave the powerpoint presentation at home and we’re going to try to make people giggle as we taste through some of our favorite wines in the world: each other’s!
This offbeat performance is scheduled at 11 AM on Tuesday, May 18th, and it will take place at the daringly named “Access Zone” of the wine fair. Please stop by. You will have a blast. You will taste some yummy wines. You will even taste a wine cocktail. We will break every rule wine snobs hold dear. And we will do it all before noon time on a Tuesday. Because that is how we roll in the Access Zone.
11:00 Winery Collaboration with Quevedo and O-Vineyards
Oscar Quevedo from the Douro and Ryan O’Connell from the Languedoc, two powerful social media enabled wine producers, will show the power of collaboration in a live wine tasting of each others wines. Be prepared to laugh, enjoy some great wines, and have a good time. Not to mention learn something about how collaboration will lead to success with your wineries wines!
The Access Zone also has a ton of other wine programming organized by Catavino. Later on Tuesday, there’s going to be a deal with Tim Atkins (The Wine Gang) and Gérard Bertrand’s ‘Tautavel’ wine. Bertrand is another heavy hitter from the Languedoc and a French rugby legend, and I guess he’ll be making an appearance too. If the lineup of the access zone is indicative of the rest of the London Wine Fair, the LIWF should be a hoot and a half.
London, prepare yourself. You are about to be accessed…hard… ew.
How to find us
Domaine O’Vineyards, located in the North Arrondissement of Carcassonne, is just minutes from the Carcassonne train station, the Medieval City, and the Carcassonne Airport.
GPS coordinates: 43.259622, 2.340387
Wine, Dine, Relax at our Boutique Vineyard
Unique thing to do in Carcassonne
Wine Cellar. Winery Visits. Wine Tasting.
Wine & Food Pairing
North Arrondissement of Carcassonne
885 Avenue de la Montagne Noire
11620 Villemoustaussou, France
Tel: +33(0) 630 189 910
Best by GPS.
Follow the signs to Mazamet/ Villemoustaussou using the D118. At the end of the last straight part of D118, you will come to a roundabout with the Dyneff gas station.
Take the exit towards Pennautier. Continue 500m to a small roundabout and go straight over.
Look out for the second road on your right, Avenue des Cévennes which curves up hill (about 1km) to Avenue de la Montagne Noire on the left.
At the last juction, bear left. the road sign “Ave de la Montagne Noire” (confusing as it seems to show a right turn)
After another 500m you will see our red brick color building in the middle of the vines.