CLC 18: The village bar for coffee

Thursday, March 22

Mattieu has the best coffee machine in town. Almost everybody agrees on this, so his bar in the center of Gevrey is quite popular. Of course, not everybody likes coffee and the morning usually finds a few of the locals enjoying un petit canon , a little glass of wine. Most of these drinkers are retired folks who live in the center for whom the Gendarmerie is not a concern because they don’t drive. Mattieu also serves a light lunch and snacks, which are popular with tourists. In this season though, tourists are scarce, so its mostly us locals who support the place. After lunch today I wanted a coffee, but I didn’t want to make a pot at home, so I went to Mattieu’s for a cup.

Leaving the bar I peddled up the main street toward the ancien mairie the old village hall. The ground floor with its arched opening used to be the market hall, and the offices were above. This led to difficulties for handicapped people, so the mairie was moved into the old school when the new school was renovated and all the classes consolidated in one place. I notice that the clock on the building is half an hour slow. I suppose that it will be reset this coming weekend when we go on summer time.

Turning right at the old mairie and then left into the rue de l’Eglise, I go up to my friend Hervé’s house. He’s not home. Hervé and his wife Joelle have a B-n-B that is named Gibriacus after the owner of the villa that stood here in Roman times. Hervé is a seasoned cyclist, and likes to have other cyclists as guests.

Leaving Hervé’s I ride past an old vineyard at the edge of the village. I’ll swing around this plot past the houses seen in the distance.

On this second day of spring, its nice to see a bit of color on the route. Finally, I ride through the most famous vineyard in Gevrey and the one that gave the village its “surname” , Chambertin. The champs de Bertin, or Bertin’s field was first mentioned in 663 when part of it was given to the abbey of Beze. For oenophiles this is the epicenter of Pinot Noir producing one of France’s, and indeed the world’s finest wines.  I am a bit of a “homer”, but I would have to agree. Its all downhill from here to get to my house, and as the sky was getting darker, I turned for home.

Old fogy from France. Rides bikes and eats.

4 response to "CLC 18: The village bar for coffee"

  1. By: Seasidejanet Posted: March 23, 2018

    Keith…what a beautiful area you live in. The winery I work for Morgan produces some of the best Pinot Noir around. Our vineyards are in the Santa Lucia Highlands of the Salinas Valley. One of the early growers “Gary’s Pinot” is somewhat of a legend and it goes like this. He was traveling in your area in the mid/late 70’s came across some cuttings and some how they may have ended up in is coat tails. In those days you could get anything on a plane and viola’ amazing world renowned Pinot Noir in Monterey County!!

  2. By: Bikerdockeith Posted: March 23, 2018

    Hi Janet,
    Yes, Burgundy is beautiful. Actually, it was the farmland hereabouts that attracted me more than the vineyards. I’m sure that the wine from your part,of the world is quite good. I really liked the Chardonnays that I drank when I was last in Monterrey. As I see it American wine is still in its infancy. It will,take many more,years (centuries?) until the growers there discover the right mix of soil, variety, method of vinification and aging to match what can (but is not always) accomplished in the old world. When the vineyards in California have a history as old as the Clos de Beze, you will really have something. Until then, we will just have to “make do” with the fine wines produced now.
    Cheers,
    Keith

  3. By: The Navigator Posted: March 24, 2018

    I like history lessons going back to ‘653’. How I would have loved to have seen Australia in 653 – what magnificent forests there would have been! I don’t drink much wine – maybe I need to go to the ‘old country’ to be sold on it 🙂 Hope your rain is subsiding. Em

  4. By: Bikerdockeith Posted: March 25, 2018

    Hi Em,

    “Camp is very entertaining, and they say that we’ll have fun when it stops raining” -Alan Sherman.
    That song has been running around in my head for a while now. With luck “Here Comes the Sun” will,soon follow!

    Cheers,

    Keith

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