A year on the Hill of Corton

Archive for August, 2017

Venice

Having enjoyed a few days pre-Christmas a few years ago we returned in February with friends, and I promised to be less seduced with is photographic potential…… Well I tried.

The view from airport waterbus sets the tone, damp.

Usual view from the Accademia bridge, we’re off in search of some culture.

 

Not busy at the Accademia, even though its raining.

 

Perhaps he’s scaring everyone away..?

 

Maybe the shops are irrisistable…

 

Better get this view out of the way early on.

 

Accademia bridge 2

 

Harry’s Bar gets cleaned up

 

Ready for its visitors.

 

St Mark’s Square, open for business too.

 

Accademia Bridge 3

 

How to deliver a fridge in Venice 1

 

A birth announcement shines out in dark narrow street.

 

Florian, part of the Venice tourist experience, at a price !

 

Residents know the best places though.

 

How to deliver a fridge in Venice 2

 

No fridges allowed here at the Arsenale

 

Chocolate o’clock at the Arsenale.

 

Meanwhile at the Rialto market someone has to do the artichokes.

 

While these two take care of the fish.

 

And the shoppers arrive via the ferry.

 

If you want a seat, look for the man in the hat.

 

Someone enjoys it

On our first trip I avoided the gondolas, this time our friends were not to be denied the experience and it happened that one of them knew how to bargain ! Get the right gondolier and it really is worth it. A damp day means business is slow and negotiation is easier.

You might even get serenaded.

 

“Back in 5 minutes”

 

But the boats still have to be repaired.

 

That’s why the owners hope you’ll tip well !

 

All that walking gives anyone an appetite.

 

Everyone can find something they like.

 

One of the great diversions is observing the variety of Venice’s doors.

Wherever you might find them

Some grand.

Some odd.

and some ordinary but still interesting

Some scary !

Some shared.

Some raise a smile.

Some watched over.

Some just watched.

 

Of course Venice is not just for tourists……yet

 

Or photographers, Venice is a dream location, is n’t it..?

 

Sometimes a little extra guidance is helpful

 

Others are coming.

 

Meanwhile life goes on.

 

As everywhere.

 

Venice is still home

 

The usual things go on everyday.

 

The locals just see things differently… As they probably always have done.

 

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Chile again, and meeting Carmenère.

The trouble, I have found with blogging, is that to do it regularly requires time, discipline, and something to post…

Well I have had not enough of the first two and too much of the third.  Just when I think I can take a break and blog a bit, something comes up. You, dear visitor, are only here for the wine stuff and that, we all know, is only part of life. So be prepared for a sunami of posts. Perhaps not all about wine.

First off, if I can remember, is Chile. Its always exciting to get a trip there, especially to Errazuriz who sponsored an award won in 2014. Not only that, there are are always beauty, hospitality, lots going on and great people.

A few days before my return to Chile for Vinedos Chadwick it was terrible to hear about the forest fires that were threatening vineyards and other agriculture there.
I did the haze of smoke even in Santiago and small areas of singed vineyards to the west but my trip was otherwise unaffected.
I was collected at Santiago airport and taken straight off to the coast to document the start of the Aconcagua valley at Vina del Mar. That started with lunch overlooking the Pacific and a bunch of pelicans!

As is often the case its often the photographs you miss that stick in the memory. As Raimundo scoured the streets of Vina del Mar for the restaurant he had been recommended to I spotted a straw-hatted man pushing an old wheelbarrow in the gutter, as we passed I caught sight of what it carried; a large framed portrait of the madonna and child in what seemed like fifty shades of purple !

I did not have the heart to disturb his concentration and ask Raimundo to turn round. And regretted it for quite a while ! He does n’t mind my occasional bouts of extra mural snapping, but not when lunch is overdue.

I rarely talk about the wines I encounter, I have no qualifications to pronounce on things vinous. However… this was my first meeting with Carmenere and I was smitten, much as I was with late picked Sauvignon Blanc last time. While many years devoted to Burgundy have formed my taste, my travels give me the chance to experience other things and that is something we should never stop doing, exploring the wine world. It is growing faster than we can keep up with !

For example, in Uruguay, Bouza’s chardonnay/albarino blend is a New World wine I will look for in future.

Enough chat, let’s have some pictures or I’ll never catch up, the Chile trip was in January!

Straight from the airport to the Pacific and a quick lunch watching the pelicans before exploring the Aconcagua Valley.

Welcome to Aconcagua Costa !

Surprisingly tame horses must belong to someone…

and cattle too.

But not to Francisco Baettig, Errazuriz winemaker.

This fox belongs to no one,
but helps keep down the number of rabbits.

Altogether a beautiful place, rolling hills that give a photographer no time off.

My discovery here this time was the Carmenere.

Next, on to Panquehue and more slopes and friendly faces.

The 19c gate to Errazuriz first estate.

The original building, or what was left after an earthquake. Now a charming visitor centre.

The “new” Icon winery.

Syrah and cactus on the slopes at Panquehue.

Francisco Baettig and Eduardo Chadwick keeping in the shade !

Mai Chadwick

And so to Caliterra for some more shots of Mai and another stunning location.

Is this a vineyard or a zoo !?
An alpaca poses for his/her (I’m not an expert) photograph at Caliterra.

Chile always offers new experiences!

Chileans love horses and my next visit was to Vinedo Chadwick, once the polo field of Eduardo’s father, Alfonso, long time captain of Chile’s national polo team. Eduardo knew this site in the Maipo valley was good for Cabernet Sauvignon and persuaded his father to turn his polo field in a vineyard in 1992.

Alfonso’s goal posts, Eduardo’s Cabernet Sauvignon. The haze on the horizon was the last of the smoke from the fires that hit Chile in January.

Eduardo in the old changing room full of memorabilia,cups and photos.

One corner of the changing room/museum at Vinedo Chadwick

Visitors are provided with a hat.

But not while tasting. Then they had individual spittoons.

Alfonso, polo’s ” poster boy” in the 1950s !