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Thanks for a really interesting post and an absolutely delicious recipe - it looks ideal for the current cold and snowy weather!

Frank Levin

I met Jean-Marc ( and Kristin)on his first American wine tour with the first bottling of Rouge-Bleu. It would be hard to find a person on earth who loves the business, art and science of wine than Jean-Marc. His blog makes for good reading if you love wine or are just curious. We have two bottles of his first vintage set aside for future enjoyment.
The recipe looks wonderful. I will try it next week. Perhaps with some screw-cap Malbec.

Mark Kane

I'm convinced. Screw caps are fine. I've always wished I had a use for all the corks. They're piled high in a big basket, some of them dating back 20 years.

Lynn McBride

Jean-Marc, thanks for the great post. I understand completely the practical reasons for a screw top, it makes perfect sense. But what about the romance of wine, the ritual of using the treasured, favorite corkscrew, the welcome sound of the popping of the cork, the woodsy smell of the cork? For me, it's part of the charm of drinking wine. Plastic corks are an acceptable compromise, but screwing off a cap reminds me not of a bottle of wine--but of taking the cap off my vinegar bottle! Guess I'm just old-fashioned.

Herm in Phoenix, Az

Thanks Jean-Marc for the informative article. I thought the metal cap and plastic corks were being phased-in because they were cheaper; I didn’t realize cork was in short supply. I do find the plastic cork harder to remove from the corkscrew. To many of us, I guess the metal cap, along with box wines, has the stigma of being used on lower priced wines.

I have followed the “Espinasse world” on Kristin’s FWAD and have enjoyed the progress of your family and the vineyard.

Lynn, I can't wait to try that pot roast recipe!

À bientôt


I enjoyed Jean-Marc's interesting and informative post!(especially the tip regarding 'corked' wine!)
(I also enjoy Kristin's blog,French Word A Day).
When he spoke of Chateauneuf-du-Pape,it brought back wonderful memories of my cher Papa,who found it to be his favorite of favorites.
I do have difficulty accepting screw tops or plastic
corks,though--perhaps because in my generation,they were mostly synonomous with cheap or inferior wine. Lynn McBride expressed it well: popping that woodsy smelling cork is part of the charm!
Burgundy Pot Roast sounds wonderful! Perfect for these cooler days. THANK YOU! Bon journee!


Bonjour Lynn,

It's noon, wintry cold, and that Burgundy Pot Roast is calling us!

So exciting to see Chief Grape's article here, and to read such friendly feedback. Wishing everyone a warm and cozy weekend.

P.S.: merci beaucoup, Lynn, and friends, for mentioning French Word-A-Day. :-)


I enjoyed this guest post by Jean-Marc and appreciated finally hearing the reasons for the migration from cork to screw tops. It all makes sense although the aesthetics are wholly different, as the others have said. I too follow Kristin and her fabulous blog French-Word-A-Day.

This recipe looks perfectly suited to leftovers I have from our Thanksgiving events, so I think I may put one together this afternoon. But I must ask, the recipe said "Stir in the cornstarch mixture" and yet I don't see a reference to cornstarch anywhere else. Any chance this could be clarified?

Jean-Marc Espinasse

Thank you all for the kind words and comments on my post. Like you, I am a wine lover and more "old school" guy than modern style. But as far as wine quality is concerned, I definitely think that scewcap is the best closure for short term drinking wines.

Lynn McBride

Oops! Claudia, thanks for catching the cornstarch, which I left out of the ingredient list, now corrected.

Carol Hjort

Bonjour Lynn!

I enjoyed the very interesting article on wine by your friend, Jean-Marc Espinasse! In a way, I am glad that the vineyards are now beginning to move away from the corked wine...I've never developed the "knack" for removing the cork without breaking it in two! :-( Andy is the "official" wine opener at our house, for that reason. We'll have to experiment with mixing a little wine with water to test whether the wine has been corked! Thanks for sharing the info!

Glad to hear you have turkey in France...I can't imagine Thanksgiving or Christmas without it!! However, I do realize that in other countries the holiday traditions are often different from ours. :-)

Carol Hjort


this is a really lovely piece, thanks. very well written - and quite convincing... from the other comments it has the makings of quite a discussion. We'd always thought that once we moved to france we'd be buying our wine and big plastic "10 gallon" vats - and decanting it ourselves into bottles. I'll not feel so ashamed now when our guest are treated to the screw tops! Teresa

maureen winterhager's a bit like books and Kindle, isn't it? Or writing an email or penning a letter? Using a PEN and ink instead of a ballpoint? Progress. Not always compatible with tradition and romance and atmosphere - but, well, we wouldn't be on this blog without it, would we? thanks for the interesting input!

Margaret Dennis

So nice to see Jean-Marc on your post. FWD and your blog are my favorites!

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