Day 7 – Last Day on the Seine!

Rack of Lamb

Rack of Lamb

Liz Barrett with AMA Waterways

Liz Barrett with AMA Waterways

Apricot Trilogy

Apricot Trilogy

We are back in Paris for the final leg of our Celebration of Wine Cruise on the Seine! Last evening we dined at the Chef’s Table specialty restaurant at the ship’s stern. Chef prepared chicken carpaccio with tuna – basil cream, pan fried salmon with sesame – lavender crust and porcini salsa, grilled lamb rack with herb mash potato, rijta, and broccoli, and a dessert honoring the apricot – a spoonful of apricot sorbet in a waffled caramelized crepe, an apricot pastry dumpling, and a shot glass of Marillen liqueur!

Place de Vosges, Marais

Place de Vosges, Marais

French Garden, Marais

French Garden, Marais

Crepes Cart

Crepes Cart

Moulin Rouge Selfie

Moulin Rouge Selfie

Today’s excursion explored the Marais neighborhood of Paris, featuring remnants of the ancient wall of Paris, the mansions of the French nobility, and the traditional home to Paris’ Jewish population. We strolled through the Place de Vosges and visited its art galleries and cafes. Once back to the ship, we enjoyed a Champagne tasting with Preston Mohr, learning about the Champagne region of France, levels of sweetness in Champagne, and the difference between vintage and non-vintage Champagnes. Did you know that vintage Champagne takes less effort to produce than non-vintage because vintage Champagne is supposed to have a unique taste, while non-vintage must have a consistent taste year after year, even though grapes are used from different growing years? Tonight Chef prepared a special Thanksgiving entrée of turkey meat, prune stuffing, French crosne, beet root, carrot mash, and cider sauce for the American passengers as well as a scrumptious cream of pumpkin soup. After dinner, Belgian classical artist La Strada performed in the lounge, delivering a beautiful collection of stringed arrangements with their guitar and violin.

Montmartre Artist Colony

Montmartre Artist Colony

Eiffel Tower at Night

Eiffel Tower at Night

We spent our additional free day in Paris taking in the exquisite artwork of Monet, Cezanne, Renoir, Rousseau, Picasso, Matisse, Degas, Manet, Redon, and Rodin at the Musee d’Orsay and the Musee de L’Orangerie, and exploring the sights and sounds of Montmartre. Montmartre is a fascinating area of Paris, featuring the Sacre Coeur Basilica, the Moulin Rouge, and many art galleries and cafes. We saved the grand finale for last, ascending to the very top of the Eiffel Tower after dinner that night! What an incredible view of the romantic City of Light!

Grand Palais, Paris

Grand Palais, Paris

Barry and Kim Wiss

Barry and Kim Wiss

Executive Team

Executive Team

Au Revior, AMALegro!

Au Revior, AMALegro!

As difficult as it is to say au revoir to France, we are anxious to return to our family and friends in North Carolina and at Winestyles. We have made many priceless memories and some new friends as well. We cannot say enough about our AMA Waterways experience – the service, attention to detail, caring attitude of the crew, the exquisite food and beverage, and the overall accommodations aboard AMALegro have been top notch. One of our fellow passengers summed it up well when she said “every day has been both enjoyable and educational”.

Thank you to our Trinchero wine hosts, Barry and Kim Wiss, who have also been gracious in sharing their experience and knowledge. What a terrific way to experience a country – there is substantial truth in the statement “an ocean cruise takes you to a country; a river cruise takes you through a country”!

Truly the best way to TASTE, LEARN and ENJOY! 🙂

Cheers,

Michael and Tiffany Reynolds, proprietors of WineStyles Greensboro, NC

 

Day 6 – Cruising on the Seine!

Picturesque View of the Seine Valley

Tiffany and Michael – Picturesque view of the Seine valley

Bonjour! 

Emily and Alex Serving Normandy Lunch

Emily and Alex serving Normandy lunch

Selection des Frommages

Selection des frommages

Chef Stefan Serving Lamb Shank Normandie

Chef Stefan serving Lamb Shank Normandie

Day 6 on the Seine began with another informative wine education presentation by Barry Wiss. We learned of the humble beginnings of the Trinchero family in Napa and its continued dedication to responsible agribusiness, producing wine using biodynamic practices to conserve energy, recycle, and re-purpose by-products. Barry also explained how to read French wine labels, from discerning AOC from AOP to which varietals are affiliated with Bordeaux and Bourgogne. Finally, we played “What’s Your Wine?”, and learned that the true parent grape of Zinfandel is not Primitivo from Italy but Crijenak Kastelanski from Croatia! Afterwards, Chef treated us to a Normandy Lunch, celebrating the various dairy, apple, and seafood products indigenous to the region. All week we have witnessed our Hotel Manager Markus return from the villages with a smile on his face and his arms full of fresh produce, shellfish, and baked goods! Bon Appetit!!

Petit Andely

Petit Andely

Peter's Cricifixion Notre Dame Stained Glass

Notre Dame Stained Glass – Peter’s Crucifixion

Petit Andely Village Corner

Petit Andely Village Corner

Our afternoon excursion took us to the cobblestone streets of Les Andelys, made up of Grand Andely and Petit Andely. In Grand Andely, we toured another Cathedral of Notre Dame, this one built for the queen in the 14th century. The stained glass in this cathedral is nothing short of spectacular! Les Andelys is a picturesque mosaic of early Norman architecture, idyllic natural scenery, and the sensory delights of a cozy French village.

 

Grazing Sheep

Grazing Sheep

High above the village lie the ancient ruins of Chateau Gaillard, a castle built by Richard the Lionheart in 1198 to protect Rouen and the rest of Normandy from King Phillip II and the French. Hewn from the chalk white limestone cliffs that adorn the river valley, Chateau Gaillard was the strongest fortress of its age. After Richard’s death, Phillip finally laid siege to the castle and captured it in 1204. It became a French historical monument in 1862.

Taste, Learn and Enjoy,

Tiffany & Michael of WineStyles Greensboro, NC