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Peter Franus
May 21, 2020 | Peter Franus

A Most Memorable Wine Moment

When I was living in LA, I took a French class at UCLA--Ricky Nelson happened to be in the class. The teacher was Belgian, and if you can believe it, he would always ask the women in the class if he had their permission to remove his sport jacket. We’ve come a long way in the etiquette department.

I continued with Alliance Française In Napa, so by the time I flew to France in May of 1988, my French was in very good shape. 

My wine country journey began in the Loire, staying in the delightful and unpretentious town of Saumur. Off to Bordeaux with wonderful visits to Leoville-Las Cases—tasting Mount Veeder Cabernet side by side with theirs. Pontet-Canet where I was invited to lunch along with members of La Comédie Française. Lynch-Bages. 

I visited the cooperages where our barrels were produced. Stayed in Cahors home to Malbec. Burgundy—Domaine Guy Roulot and Jadot among others. Tears in my eyes as I looked at some of the legendary vineyards.

But there is one visit in particular that perhaps stands out as the most memorable. I had an appointment at Moët & Chandon, but wasn’t sure who was going to be my tour guide. It turned out to be the legendary Edmond Maudiere, director of winemaking. He spent several hours with me and the final icing on the cake was sitting in a small parlor with him sipping vintage champagne. It was nearly 10 years to the day that I decided to do the wine thing. It was indeed a special moment. 

Curious to hear about any of your memorable wine moments.




Jamee Stroble's Gravatar
Jamee Stroble
@ May 27, 2020 at 11:23 AM
Mine always will be you at Mt. Veeder and our bear, LeRoy, the king, in the back seat, you brought him inside for our tour and tasting and you have been in our lives ever since. Thank you, Peter (and LeRoy)

Harold Mintz's Gravatar
Harold Mintz
@ May 27, 2020 at 12:00 PM
I was heading back to LA just as the Woolsey Fire was coming over the Santa Monica Mountains. It was heading towards the Pacific Ocean MUCH faster than predicted. I had just touched down at LAX and called my wife and said to grab our Emergency Box stuffed with critical papers and irreplaceable items and get the heck out of there. When I met her at my cousin's house safely away from the fires, I noticed sitting on top of the Emergency Box was a bottle of PF's Mt Veeder. I asked my wife why she packed the bottle to which she replied, "You said critically important. Peter Franus wines are ABSOLUTELY critically important. Ahhhh. So true.

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