Monday, Sept. 24th
Day Trip #12


Up to pouring rain. Thunder & lightning & heavy rain before dawn.

            Followed our usual routine. Deb still feeling poorly especially her sore throat & clogged sinuses. Nice to have breakfast in our rented apartment – more like being home. We have tea we brought from home & the steel ground oatmeal I brought from home with added mueslix & fruit. The others – cereal, eggs, toast, jelly, peanut butter.

            We are off before 10:00 & drive north to Sauvigny-les-Beaune & pay 10€ each to enter Chateau de Sauvigny. Built in 1478 & changed / added on in the 1700s & 1800’s. Renovated in 1978 & you’d never know it! It contains an astounding collection of motorbikes (1902-1960 models), fighter planes (80), 2400 model aircraft, plus fire engines, straddle tractors (used in the vineyards to drive between the rows of vines. We have seen many in use today as they pick the grapes.) The most well known part of their collection is “Abarth” racing cars, which raced in the 24 hours of Le Mans, etc. The collection is housed in the “Petit Chateau”, outdoors, at an outdoor “tent”, and in the chateau. The first floor of the chateau is furnished & looks to be set up for people to rent out for events. The 2nd floor (what they call the 1st floor) is private (prive), and the 3rd contains motor cycles, bicycles, plane paraphernalia & models. The chateau has beautiful architectural details (entry, staircase, and ceilings are ornate) plus fireplaces on 3rd floor are the same – ornate. Collections there are housed in a large ballroom & one tower contains shelves for books and a library. However, when it starts to rain heavily, we hear dripping water, & we realize there is water dripping quickly on our head.  We see much water & structural damage throughout. The worst is in the stairwell, which even has ferns growing on a section of wall & distortion or worn down area on the stones where water has dripped for a long time & created holes in the base of the window.

            The rain lets up as we leave & the wind starts to blow, which clears out the clouds.  We drive further northeast to Pernand Vergelesses & Aloxe-Corton, known for the premier cru or grand cru wine, supposedly the best vines in the Burgundy area. More picturesque towns, & Pernand Vergelesses has a “panorama” high up on a hill. We park & walk thru the wet grass to the overlook, complete with a Virgin Mary sculpture. It is cloudy, but has cleared enough for us to have long beautiful views, including the “Burgundian” tiled roofs & steeples of churches (eglises).


Chateau Sauvigny-les-Beaune

the Chateau's "Annex"


a small part of the Chateau's collection

view of Pernand-Vergelesses, from the Virgin Mary statue


            We drive on to Beaune, find a parking spot (public, no cost) on Rue Madeleine. The restaurant we wanted to eat at (suggested by Rick Steves) is full (Cave du Madelaine). We end up at Brasserie le Velena. Good, relatively inexpensive meal, frequented by businessmen, locals & tourists. 12€ plat, Main course plus appetizer and dessert.  Me: smoked salmon formed into a disc over goat cheese, sliced potato, sun dried tomatoes & toast, resting on a salad; Don – terrine of beef; Deb – warm goat chs. salad. We all have the same entrée – filet mignon of pork on mash. pot. Desserts were excellent: Don – choc. mousse; Deb – fresh fruit cup; Tim – brownie w/ van. caramel ice cream; me – 3 dips caramel ice cream w/ caramel sauce & a cookie & a large, long piece of nougat. Yum! Very good food for a good price. Can one get a bad meal in France?!

            Afterwards, Deb & I walk over to the Pharmacie, as Tim & Don stay to pay the bill. We meet a “pharmacist” who helps Deb with over the counter medications which will give her some relief from her cold symptoms. €17 in cost. She takes the new meds & we head off to the TI for details of what we want. On to the Atheneum gift shop, recomm. by Rick Steves again. They have lovely things & are located across from the Hotel Dieu.

            We split up for the first time on our trip, & Tim & I head to the Salvador Dali exhibition on Place Monge. 7€ each for a small exhibit of prints, drawings and sculpture. Too expensive. Tim decides Dali was a very self-focused character w/ a huge ego, but, we knew that before too. He was also a talented, creative man & a great technician.

            Afterwards, we walk along the streets (picturesque as usual) & stop into a few shops. Believe it or not, I find two pairs of boots (black & taupe) for 37€ ($45). A good buy. We’ll see how long they last.

            We head back to the car. Deb finds a sewing store she wants to come back to.

            Back to Pommard. Deb stays at the apartment as Tim, Don & I walk to the downtown to do a wine tasting. Many small places are not doing it now bec. they are busy picking. We end up at Domain Patrick Clemencet (2 gendarmes in town on motorcycle looking for speeders). Me – 3 whites all made w/ chardonnay grapes & they are okey. Tim & Don -- 6 reds. They end up buying Volnay (15€). All are made w/ pinot noir grapes. The woman speaks no English & with our “pidgin” French, we at least figure out they have 2 more days of picking to do. Light rain on our walk back to our apartment.

            Rest & relax. News in British/English & Star Trek in German.

            Dinner of a variety of snacks & goodies. Then Deb, Don & I play cards – Crazy 8’s, War, and Rummy. Fun!