It’s February and the Maison du Languedoc New York is bustling with life as the Sud de France staff set up a press conference. They’re announcing and explaining the Sud de France festival which will encourage restaurants, wine bars and other vendors to feature wines from the Languedoc Roussillon.
In the meantime, I’ve been running around Manhattan telling people about my own experiences in the south of France. Some presentations are very on-subject like my guest lectures at NYU’s School of Business. Other times I deviate a bit in the spirit of good fun. A few nights ago, I actually presented a history of American Prohibition at an event where the other speakers talked about crashing parties and attaching weaponized laser technology to sharks.
People have been asking me if I’m really promoting the Languedoc Roussillon or even wine at all. It’s true that more and more of my events seem to be only tangentially related to wine. But I know that this is the best way for me to reach people and to infect them with a love for the Languedoc Roussillon. Very few people want to hear an empty sales pitch. And as long as you give a good story and it IS tangentially related to wine, people walk away from a talk with a certain curiosity about the region and its winemakers.
Other events this week included pouring some Languedoc Roussillon wines at the Cornell Club as part of Wendy Crispell’s educational and laid back tasting workshop. We also had a blast tasting the wines with cast and crew from a very successful Broadway show that will remain unnamed lest I get them in trouble. And a whole slough of other wine fun.
Later tonight I’ll be headed to Gary Vaynerchuk’s Sirius radio broadcast which is 8-10 EST. That should be a blast too and a great opportunity to talk about the Languedoc Roussillon and everybody’s efforts to promote the region.
Photos, videos, audio and such will come shortly. Just know that a lot of people in New York are talking about the Languedoc Roussillon!
Despite the fact that I really love seeing my own face on the homepage of Love That Languedoc, here’s a little tribute to the dude who told me to start this blog in the first place: Gary Vaynerchuk.
A few days ago, he included a Languedoc wine (Mas Julien 2006) in an episode of his ground-breaking web TV show “Wine Library TV”. Gary started in 2005 with the birth of online video and he is the prime example of a dude who went against the advice of mainstream wine entertainers. He does an unedited show (just adding a title sequence and some opening theme) and he acts like himself, a down to earth guy who enjoys tasting wine.
This episode is about pairing wine with hotdogs from popular American gas station & convenience store 7-Eleven. Most of his episodes are much less gimmicky, but everybody loves the goofball theme episodes. And this one does a good job of bringing his unpretentious demeanor to the forefront. He talks about “Bunk-Ass Malbec” that is getting “jumpy the sharky”. This is a language that doesn’t get used a lot on the wine trade circuit. But it’s language that normal people (American geeks like me, at least) can understand. I talk like this. And I love this about the show.
Also, he tastes Mas Julien’s Terrasses du Larzac 2006. Gary says some very nice things. It’s not a bargain or a steal like some Languedoc wines he offers in the US, mostly because Mas Julien has earned a reputation and really puts a lot of work into its wines… 30 bucks, an understandable price. But it’s also the only wine that he goes back and sips at the end of the show. He also mentions that it is totally wrong for 7-Eleven hot dog because the poor hot dog just can’t handle all that flavor. The hot dog is lost in this deep wine. Entertaining stuff. Watch it.
Anyway, my blog is about one year old. Thanks to Gary for convincing me to start Love That Languedoc. And a big thanks to you for following along.
If you want Gary to convince you to start a blog, maybe pick up a copy of his book on why now is the time to cash in on your passion. And preorder his upcoming book, The Thank You Economy, about how businesses are using the Internet to bring customer relations and caring back into fashion. The Thank You Economy is like a manual on how to use the Internet to care about your customers the way your grandparents cared about their customers.
And those of you living in Paris will be able to catch Gary at Le Web and Vin 2.0 this December. I will also be talking at Vin 2.0 and generally hanging out in Paris around then if you want to meet up.
I got to visit the cult hit La Pèira in the Terrasses du Larzac and taste a lot of delicious wines. Unfortunately for you anglophones, the reds were tasted in La Pèira’s French tasting. Luckily though, I’m not the only one who talks about them. You can check out Gary Vaynerchuk’s take on these delicious red wines or read what the Wine Advocate says.
In the meantime, this English language episode is packed full of goodies including a blow-your-mind white wine (viognier roussane blend) and a tasting of the 2009 Syrah from La Pèira pure in the holding tank. NICE. This gives you a sneak peak of the Syrah that will make its way into their extremely limited run wines.
In retrospect, I really didn’t freak out enough about this white wine which we finished off at lunch. If you like big reds but never really got passionate about white wine (or you know somebody like that), Deuslys is a hardcore white that is explosive. We tasted it AFTER tasting three HUGE red wines and it still felt fresh, big and delicious. The only problem is that they make sooo little of it for now. It’s super rare…for now.
Terroir des Terrasses du Larzac
Lastly, one of the great things about this vineyard is that you can follow them online. It seems like Rob Dougan has signed up for every social media site I’ve ever heard of. La Peira on Twitter on Facebook on Flickr
La Pèira 2007, La Pèira, AOC Terrasses du Larzac
Las Flors 2007, La Pèira, AOC Terrasses du Larzac
Les Obriers, La Pèira, AOC Terrasses du Larzac
See also: Malolactic Fermentation – A second fermentation (completely separate from alcoholic fermentation) in which malic acids are converted to lactic acids. Softens the tannins and decreases certain types of spoilage. The wine we taste in the tank is probably going through it’s malo as we are tasting it. It’s hard/impossible to tell by taste, but I suspect (and hope) that the malo is underway.