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.