Today’s wine: Cotes du Rhône red 2014 Lieu-dit-Clavin -Domaine de la Vieille Julienne2018/3/22


Origin : Southern Rhône Valley, Châteauneuf du Pape
Grape variety: 75% Grenache-10% Cinsault- 5% Syrah- 5% Mourvèdre- 5% divers
SO2: 40mg/l

Viticulture : Organic farming, biodynamic

Harvest : Manually

Vinification: first sorting in the vineyards, second sorting after arriving in the cellar-wild yeast only- no SO2- 20 days in vat- light maceration to respect the grapes

Élevage: one year in oak barrel and 6 months in bottles


Vines years average: 85 years old.

Vineyards: 4 hectares, south exposed terrasses- mix of Miocène formation, Helvétien and alluviums post-wurmiennes-Villafranchienne terrasse covered with pebbles-yellow sands/molasse

Bottling: without fining or filtration. 2mg of SO2 added

Wine Advocate-Parker :89
From vines located around the estate and just over the northern border of Châteauneuf du Pape, the 2014 Côtes du Rhône Lieu Dit Clavin offers lots of ripe red currants, toasted spice, licorice and crushed herbs in a medium-bodied, mouth filling and Provençal character. You can feel the tannin on the mid-palate and finish
To pair with: a splendid apple pie or a pork loin with apricots.


Winemaker comment: “It has good vivacity, ripe grape flavours with freshness,” Jean-Paul Daumen


to eat with: braised rabbit with olives and capers
Service Temperature: 16-18°C
Vol: 13,5% vol
To drink: from now until 2024,
Decant for 2 hours prior to drinking
Bottle Size: 0,75l
Price: ¥2,765

Condrieu and Viognier2018/3/22

AOC Condrieu / AOC Condrieu

As the source of some of the most vibrant and powerful white wines in France, Condrieu is uniquely situated in one of the northern outposts of the Rhone River. It is the original Viognier appellation with a wine growing history reaching back well over two thousand years. Like most of the wine regions of the Northern Rhone, Condrieu’s vines grow on extremely steep and narrow granite terraces. But what makes the region unique is a topsoil, locally called, “arzelle,” made of decomposed mica. This and a sheltering of the harsh northern winds, make optimal sites to produce opulent and brilliant Viognier. It is a tiny zone with no room for expansion and produces miniscule amounts of wine each year, contributing to its allure.


A fine Condrieu will have aromas and flavors suggestive of ripe stone fruit, lime peel, green almond, ginger, white flowers and toasted nuts. A honeyed smell may mislead you to think the wine will be sweet but the modern style favors totally dry on the palate. Its texture will be full and soft but a touch of mineral will provide great balance.

Viognier grape:
Full-figured and reminiscent of a potent floral perfume, Viognier is the mandatory grape of the northern Rhône appellation Condrieu and neighboring monopole (an entire appellation dedicated to just one winery) Château Grillet. It is also a blending variety in several appellations throughout the entire Rhône Valley. Viognier is grown throughout much of the world with some degree of success, but is perhaps at its best outside of France in Oregon, Washington, and cooler parts of Australia, where minerality and acidity can be achieved to give the wine the backbone it can sometimes lack.
In the Glass


This is a heady, aromatic variety making rich, complex, and full-bodied white wines redolent of a floral bouquet and assorted stone fruits and tropical fruits, with a hint of spice not unlike that of Gewürztraminer. It is lower in acidity than most white wines, lending to its heavy impression on the palate. While a whiff of Viognier might suggest sweet flavors, these wines are typically quite dry.

Perfect Pairings:
Viognier is an intense, bold variety that can easily stand up to gutsy food like pork loin with apricot stuffing, or rich, spicy fare.


Sommelier Secret:
While Viognier is a white grape, it also plays an important role in the red wines of Côte Rôtie in the northern Rhône, made otherwise from Syrah. About 5% Viognier is typically co-fermented with the Syrah in order to stabilize the color, and as an added benefit, add a subtle perfume.

aVin next wine tasting and concert, March 17th at Studio QUE. Let’s celebrate the beginning of the spring with a glass of white or rosé in music!2018/3/8

New sparkling wines from Die, Clairettes & Crémants!


From which land flies the sound of the flute?
Carried by the spring breeze this evening
Under the leaves and flowers.
The birds listen to a conversation.
A refreshing glass of wine.
(Li Po)


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From 1pm to 6pm: wine tasting.
Entrance: 2000 yens ( including a coupon of 2000 yens deductible on any bottle bought on the day, at the tasting).

Wine line up:

George Vernay(ジョルジュ ヴェルネ)
le Clos du Caillou(クロデュカイユ)
Vieille Julienne(ヴィエイユ ジュリアン)
Chateau Vannieres(シャトーヴァニエール)
Funky Chateau(ファンキーシャトー)

From 6pm: Accoustic concert Nao IIzuka, flute and Hisao Fukushima, guitar.
Concert fee: on donation basis.

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Edgar Degas exhibition in Paris at the Musée d’Orsay until February 25th: a rare occasion to enjoy his striking paintings on women and alcohol.2018/2/15

Beyond his famous ballerinas’ paintings, this exhibition is the occasion to discover several of his paintings revealing the toughness of life at the time.


For the 100th anniversary of Edgar Degas death( born Hilaire Germain Edgar de Gas), French painter, sculptor, printmaker and photographer, the Orsay Museum pays him a tribute until February 25th with an exceptionnal exhibition combining sketches, charcoal, pastels & red chalks drawings.
The work is presented along with Paul Valéry text “Degas, Danse, Dessin” who was a closed friend of the artist.
The friendship between Degas and Valéry lasting more than twenty years resulted in an essay published by Editions Vollard in 1937, Degas Danse Dessin. Both intimate and universal, it conveys a poetic, fragmentary image of the painter’s personality and his art, and a kind of meditation on the creative process.

If Degas is well known by a large public for his pictorial representations of young ballerinas, confined interiors or his bronze sculptures, others types of work gained mondial recognition and notoriety.
Among them, those depicting women and alcohol, which have earned the esteem of many historians.

The vast majority of women living in the 19th century in Paris were from very poor backgrounds and were finding comfort in cafés, popular dancing halls of the capital.
There, they could drink without fear of judgement, absinthe and wine. A free attitude magnified by Degas in his compositions.


Privileged witness of a fast changing world encompassing strong inegalities and contrasts.
This banker’s son saw Champagne bubbling and endlessly flowing in the National Opera backstage, uper class salons or horse competitions but also captured the despair of an era, and the use of the “green fairy” (refering to absinthe, a liquor made of anise, mint, flowers & leaves extracts) as an anti-depressant and drug for working-class women ( the so-called “grisettes”) loners, milliners and dressmakers.

9h30 to 18h from Tuesday to Sunday
9h30 to 21h45 on Thursday
Closed every Mondays

(source La Revue du Vin de France February 2018)

The galette des rois, a very French tradition!2018/1/26

The galette des rois is a cake traditionally shared at Epiphany, on 6 January. It celebrates the arrival of the Three Wise Men in Bethlehem.

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Composed of a puff pastry cake, with a small charm, the fève, hidden inside, it is usually filled with frangipane, a cream made from sweet almonds, butter, eggs and sugar. But more gourmet versions are available for us to enjoy, with chocolate, apple or candied fruits. Every year, the leading French pâtissiers offer exclusive creations for the tradition of crowning the one who finds the fève.

The season of the galette des rois begins on Twelfth Night and ends on Shrove Tuesday but can be celebrated during all month in January.
Celebrated on 6 January, Epiphany corresponds to the moment when the baby Jesus is presented to the Three Wise Men, Melchior, Caspar and Balthazar, who have arrived from the three continents, Asia, Africa and Europe, to give their gifts. Like many Christian festivals, the date of Epiphany corresponds to what was originally a pagan festival. In the past, the Romans celebrated Saturnalia, the festival of the winter solstice, at which a king or queen was chosen for one day, by means of a white or black bean hidden in a cake.

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The galette des rois, in its simple version, is a flaky pastry with notches incised across it and browned in the oven. It is usually served with various preparations: frangipane, fruit, chocolate, cream, etc. The one the French like most is filled with frangipane, a cream made from sweet almonds, butter, eggs and sugar. It is said to have been invented by a Florentine nobleman, the Marquis of Frangipani, several centuries ago.

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In the past, the pastry would be cut into as many portions as there were guests, plus one. The last one, called the “part du pauvre” or poor man’s share, was for the first poor person who stopped by the house. In the south of France, the traditional dessert is not a puff pastry but a brioche with fruit, also containing a fève, and known as the gâteau des rois. It is made from a sweet brioche dough flavoured with orange flower essence, shaped into a crown, with pieces of red fruit and sugar on top. They even played “find the king” at the table of Louis XIV. The ladies of the court who found the fève became queens of France for a day and could ask the king to grant them a wish called “grâces et gentillesse”. But the Sun King, Louis XIV, was to abolish this custom.

In the 18th century, the fève was a porcelain figurine representing the nativity and characters from the crib. Nowadays there is a wide range of different fèves which are much sought-after by collectors. The family tradition is for everyone to gather together to cut the famous cake. The youngest child goes under the table and points out the guests, who are then given their portion of the cake. A cardboard crown is supplied with the cake. The one who finds the fève is crowned and chooses his or her queen or king.

What to drink with your Galette?
Champagne and Crémant de die(semi-dry and sweet), Clairette de Die (semi-dry) Jaillance. Or a dry white as Château Vannières Bandol or Côtes-du-Rhône Domaine de la Vieille Julienne or Clos du Caillou.

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