Short hand in the notebook and constant translation from French to English. After a day of stains on teeth, hands and notebook pages. After barrels here, tanks there, old wood foudres, and multiple blends. Different spices, fruits, and flowers. After all of the power (and alcohol) saturated wines, and after the varying tannin levels…
At the end of a day of all of this, what do our brains and palates need ???
So, armed with The Duc’s leather satchel containing a couple of bottles that we ‘need to re-examine after air’, we head to our Vietnamese friends at Xuan Lan in down town Orange. The spices in the cuisine sooth our palates and our grumbling stomachs…and actually goes really well with Chateauneuf du Pape. We order dishes to pass around; samosas, crab claws, bun-tom, frogs legs with candied ginger, cuttlefish and tamarind sauce….
The spice in this kind of cuisine (with ginger, soy sauce, tamarind) has a spice and a bitterness to it. The Chateauneuf du Pape blends we taste, and re-taste themselves have notes of ginger, pepper, exotic woods, cinnamon, clove, but also smoky mushroom notes.