Wine Tasting Luncheon

Terry Orner

Thirty Nine ESU members and guests enjoyed a wine-tasting luncheon in the teaching restaurant of the Lycée Sadi Carnot in Saumur on Friday, 17 March 2017.  Cathy Henton of “Le Tasting Room”, was our speaker and our teacher for the day.  Cathy is a qualified wine expert with over 25 years in the business. Together with her husband, she organises wine tours and educational excursions throughout the Loire Valley. 


Cathy provided detailed insight into local wines which she paired with the dishes that were prepared and served by the students at the Sadi Carnot. She spoke about the varieties of grape that thrive in our region, and accompanied her talk with snippets of the history of various producers in the area and a review of how they had fared in recent years, in particular with regard to varying weather conditions.  

In all, four wines were served to accompany the meal.  A Crémant de Loire from the Domaine Leduc Frouin was offered as an aperitif. An oak matured Anjou blanc from Château du Breuil, Clos de frère Etienne, 2014, complemented a delicious leek and bacon tart. A Saumur Champigny from Château Yvonne, 2014, was served with the main course of duck and also with the cheese course.  A marvellous Côteaux de l'Aubance, from Château de Prince accompanied the « cafe gourmand » dessert in which our coffee was served alongside crème brulée, fruit salad and a strawberry filled madeleine.  As the dessert was served, John Barrett entertained the group with a short poem in honour of St Patrick's Day.

It had been some years since the ESU-LV last dined at Sadi Carnot, and by the end of lunch we were questioning why this was so. The meal was excellent, and even more enjoyable was the marvellous service provided by the restaurant students and staff who made every effort to make us welcome, right down to providing personalised menus.

Our thanks to Cathy Henton, to teacher Sophie Guillou, and to all the students who made the day so enjoyable.