After a seven-hour drive from Honfleur we arrived at our home for the next week near Puisseguin in the Bordeaux region of France, about an hour east of the city Bordeaux.
We will spend the week in a gîte (cottage) at the vineyard Clos Vieux Rochers www.closvieuxrochers.com . Upon arrival we met our hosts Steve and Rob. We also met a cameraman/director for the BBC Four program A New Life in the Sun. He was spending the day at the property filming for the upcoming Season 3. With our permission he videoed our arrival, check-in, unloading the car, and later briefly interviewed us. Quite a welcome to be sure!
After Steve showed us through our gîte we had a chance to haul in our luggage and get settled in. A short time later Rob took us on a tour of the vineyard and winery. He explained that we were in the Castillon Côte de Bordeaux wine region. Since purchasing a virtually derelict property two years ago they have done a tremendous job starting the rejuvenation of the vineyard and have started producing some tremendous wine. Their wine is 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc.
Steve and Rob have also done an amazing job of renovating the old farmhouse into four guest gîtes. Just opened in April, the accommodation is first class. Our week here is going to be very comfortable.
Dinner in the nearby village of Montagne was another special experience. Besides us in the restaurant, there was a group of 50 for a pre-wedding dinner. Both the service and food was excellent despite the challenges of serving a group of 50 besides us.
Up before dawn to photograph the property at daybreak, I was rewarded with a gorgeous sunrise.
The rest of the day was spent doing some grocery shopping in a nearby village and relaxing in the gîte. Late in the afternoon I drove a short distance to photograph Chateau de Monbadon.
Sunday, our second full day, was yet another rainy day. After breakfast the rain let up so I went for a little stroll around the property.
Mid-day we drove to Castillon-la-Bataille. Being Sunday pretty much everything was closed and the streets were pretty quiet. After strolling the streets for a while we went down to the Dordogne River, which the town borders, where I photographed the bridge and river.
I finished off the day with down the road from our rental and around the vineyard. Every time I go for a walk I find new things to photograph.