My Bordeaux Contribution

As many of you know (and as I never let you forget), I'm now a big part of the K&L Bordeaux team and I work with purchasing and promoting the wines from that part of our business, too. One of the things I wanted to work on both personally and as a company was opening up the category to new consumers who may feel intimidated or confused by the idea of fancy French wine. I wanted to do what I'd spent the last seven years doing with whisky: travel, tell stories, and introduce our shoppers to the many personalities of the industry. I absolutely fell in love with Hélène Garçin, the owner and director of Châteaux Barde-Haut and L'Eglise, while we were in Bordeaux last month and I wanted to set up a cool event with her somehow. It turns out that she and her assistant Charlotte (pictured to the right) were heading to San Francisco on May 11th and had time to do something fun that evening. My thought was this:

What if we did our own en primeur Bordeaux tasting in the store for customers to experience?

Basically, when we as a retailer go Bordeaux to taste the new vintage, we have the opportunity to taste barrel samples two years before the public is able to. It's our notes and our opinions that ultimately sell the wines and the customers have no choice but to take our advise or the advise of other professional critics in making their decision to purchase en primeur. But what if we gave them that opportunity? What if they could come to our store, meet the winemaker, and draw their own conclusions? Before the wines have been released or even priced, just like it's done during en primeur week in Bordeaux?

Tomorrow night in Redwood City you'll have that opportunity. From 5 PM to 6:30 you can come by and meet Hélène and Charlotte, taste wines from both the 2014 and 2015 vintages (neither of which have been released in bottle) and make your own assessments. She might have a few other tricks up her sleeve as well. The price is only $10 per person and no reservations are needed. Just come by and say hello!

This is hopefully only the beginning of a new wave of Bordeaux events focused on getting you involved directly with the people who make Bordeaux so enjoyable in a manner that's accessible and fun. And, believe me, Hélène is loads of fun.

-David Driscoll

David Driscoll