Do you know the way to La Paulée…

I’m nearing the end of the writing process for my book – “La Paulée, the legendary harvest celebration in Burgundy”, but of course there always seems to be more research to do. That’s the problem when you’re researching wine-related subjects – there’s always more great old wine to taste and more bacchanalia-fueled events to attend. Hey, we do what we must.

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This time I’m off to San Francisco for “La Paulée de San Francisco”, the annual U.S. version of the event that swaps back and forth between New York and SF yearly. Longtime NYC power-sommelier Daniel Johnnes puts together these American versions of the events. While they are clearly not the Burgundian original, they are definitely in the same spirit, and they most certainly do not suck. Not one bit.

Writer Jordan Mackay and mega-somm Raj Parr at La Paulée de Meursault, 2009

This year’s line-up of attending producers includes the legendary Aubert de Villaine of DRC, Frédéric Lafarge, Laurent Ponsot, Jean-Charles from Bonneau du Martray, Benjamin Leroux, Jean-Marc Roulot, Véronique Drouhin, Alexandrine Roy, and a couple dozen more. Not to mention superstar chefs including Thomas Keller and Daniel Boulud. It’s a good thing I’m training for another marathon in April – I’ve put in enough mileage the last several weeks to at least somewhat feel I’ve earned all the goodness about to come my way… (Which reminds me of a veritable orgy of food I took part in back in the 90s. In one 7-day period I managed to eat at Daniel in NYC, The French Laundry in Napa Valley, and Alain Ducasse and Pierre Gagnaire in Paris – returning home with more than a little extra weight and triglyceride numbers so high they were “off the charts, immeasurable”,  but we digress…)

At any rate, I’ll be reporting back on all the wines, food and festivities – posting, tweeting, etc., all in the name of science and good reporting, of course.  Stay tuned, action to come…