And Now Bordeaux

Well, I don’t know how we’re going to top Champagne but we will certainly try as we head south to Bordeaux.

We’re leaving Paris behind for a couple of nights and staying at the Grand Hotel Bordeaux.  the hotel is f a b u l o u s! It’ a historic land mark and resembles an Opera house and the location is ideal.

The best way to travel throughout France is by train so we take the TGV, the high speed train, in first class.  The train will take three hours.  Our train departs at 7:30am so we start with a wake up call at 5:00am to give time for breakfast, luggage, loading the bus and getting to the Montparnasse train station.

Our group (72) always seems to get attention.  I’m not sure if it’s because we are so beautiful or if it’s because we 72 black people traveling together?  What do you think?  As we are standing there waiting for our track to be displayed, a homeless man tries to blend in with our group.  As we try to distance ourselves from him he politely keeps his distance but stays near.  When I try to take a picture of the group waiting on the platform the homeless man jumps in to get in the picture.  Maybe I should have taken one of him.  He was sporting unattended dread locks and kept smiling.  Once again, I motioned with my hand for him to move and said excuse-moi and he politely moved to the side.

Sophie & me on TGV

The TGV is quick and smooth and after we talk for a bit, very quickly most of us start to doze off and before you know it we arrive in Bordeaux.  We immediately drive an hour outside of the city to Arsac and lunch at The Winery restaurant Wy.  We have the entire place to Napa.  The highlight of the meal was the dessert.  Nougat glace aux eclats de chocolat blanc, tuille aux amandes et confiture de lait.  White chocolate chipped iced nougat, almond tuile and caramel sauce.  Almost every plate was clean and our resident pastry chef gave it a thumbs up.
ourselves.  The Winery is modern and looks a lot like the wineries of

The Winery has a unique approach to wine and wine tasting.  They provide you with blind tastings of six different wines.  during the tasting you’re taught how to recognize wine through sight, smell and taste.  During the process you’re asked questions about the wine you’re tasting and some general questions about your personal tastes.  At the end you’re presented with your unique wine sign.  It’s called your oenological sign.  This determines your wine profile and your personality.  Mine is “Strong Ascendant Gourmet”. I have a muscular palate…and a soft heart.

After lunch and the wine tasting we head to the Chateaux d’Arsac for a tour and more tasting.

Happy Birthday Earnestine

This is one fun trip and we’re getting friendly.  However, as much as I enjoyed today, I like Champagne better, I mean the drink. That being said I love Bordeaux, the city. I could stay more days here and dine around and shop.  I would definitely say that Bordeaux is a B-Side destination that is a hit! It’s charming but not too small.  It has pedestrian streets with wonder shops and restaurants.  Lots of Brasseries. The people are friendly and it has an overall elegant feel.

Gene and I decide to spend an evening alone and dine at a charming brasserie just around the corner from the hotel, but we’re spotted and before we know it at least 20 group members are also dining there.  It’s OK, they all say hello and take their tables.  The pastries here are beautiful to the eyes and delectable on the tongue. I have the raspberry tart and Gene has the praline cream filled donut.  Of course, I have a bottle of Moet & Chandon to wash it all down.

Tomorrow we head to Cognac….I’m glad this day has arrived because one group member asks every day…”When are we going to Cognac?” He has the itinerary but insists on asking.

Until then…..

Ja’Vonne Harley, Co-Host, The Traveling Eye