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Hi Kristin, your stories continue to be touching and always enjoyable! I hope Jean-Marc is feeling better. Are his wines available in the Boston area?


Catherine Stock

Lovely to hear about people having fun even while doing backbreaking work. Must have to do with the personalities involved, the warming sun, and the anticipation of a hot and delicious meal waiting for them...

Kristin Espinasse

Hi Denise,

I don't think you can get them in Boston. Here are some places where Domaine Rouge-Bleu is sold and feel free to email Jean-Marc for further info (jm.espinasse AT :


Hi Kristin,
back here in this "Coin Commentaires" that suddenly became unfamiliar this morning (I feel like lost in a strange corridor).
In my previous PS, I said the ends of lines of my Comments were 'lost'. I came back now to have another look. I can only see 2 posts (from Denise and Catherine, followed by your post). How strange! Earlier on this morning I saw a post from Robin - can't see it now. No "Show more comments" or any other indication.
A bit of a nightmare, n'est-ce pas? Something wrong with me today?
I love the photos of your joyful team of "arracheurs de mauvaises herbes"! How wonderful to be able to sit outside for an apero or a meal!


My first post and the little follow up having disappeared, I will do some re-typing and e-mail it to you (in case it doesn't re-appear in "Le Coin Commentaires")

William Mears

Are your wines available in Florida, particulary in the Bradenton/Sarasota area?

Love your blog

Bill Mears

Jules Greer

Hi Kristi,

I loved your post today. I am always so happy to know exactly how my beautiful son Jean-Marc is faring during his spring clean-up of the weeds. I am so proud of how far you have come in your relationship to cooking and serving your crew. I don't believe all of your readers know of the pain you went through - how you have risen above your incompetence in the kitchen, your fear of strangers at your table, their judgments, your selfishness of sharing your true self with strangers.

I am so proud of you - I looked at your guests happy faces, I noticed their plates. I can see you have finally crossed that barren valley of fear and soared to the mountaintop of serving with grace. Your beautiful Grandmother "Audrey" had this quality, and now I see it brightly shinning in you.

Of course I am still drowning in the creek, waiting for my beautiful husband to serve my breakfast....I have never and will never experience the joy you have....I admire you so much.



Bill in St. Paul

For those who think they have "lost" a previous comments, there are two comment strings - one for Smokey and Braise's picture/story and one for the pickers of the mauvaises herbes and their story. The dogs are likely to have so many people looking after them.

Suzanne, Monroe Twp., NJ

With so much at stake, no wonder the night sweats. JM pours his heart into the vines and it is wonderful that you learned about the 2009 Mistral award! I have a bottle of the 2008 in my cellar. I'll have to look for the 2009. Loved the photos, Kristi. It looked like everyone appreciated your pork dinner. We'll see JM on the 8th in DC. Wish you could be there too.

Sophie Day

Kristin, How wonderful for Jean-Marc to win a gold medal for his wine! Congratulations to him! The pictures are so homey and full of warmth. I love it that Braise and Smokey are always in the background. Such faithful pups!

lou bogue

Congrats to JM for the win, the pics of today bring back fond memories of the farm, that i had the pleasure of meeting you both and the puppies, hope to see you again in Sept. Lou

Mike Hardcastle

Hi Kristin,

Two blogs today it seems, or have I been missing half of what you have written for .....? However long it's been since I've been reading your entertaining (and educational) column. Having posted to both now I feel content.

It's great to hear via Jules that you have risen from incompetence in the kitchen to the caterers ability to cook for a gang of hungry weeders without trepidation. All the guys in the pictures looked content.

Having been a dog owner for nearly 50 years (sadly not at the moment) I understand the problems of burrs, ticks, wild animal excrement and all of the things that are attracted to dogs and that dogs are attracted to, and of the techniques for removing them. Happy days!

Best wishes,


Julie Schorr

Congratulations to Jean-Marc and to you for the gold medal! All of your work hard paid off to help make it happen. Inspired you both, I decided to plant my own garden in the backyard (vegetables, no vines) and I am making sure my gardener knows "no herbicides or pesticides" are to be used. I will pull the weeds out myself!!
Having lived in Belgium myself, I am sure your friends appreciated the Provencal sun for a while!
San Diego, CA

Kristin Espinasse

Mom, Im so touched by your words. If I had known, as a kid and as a teen, that a future of cooking for a crew was just beyond the horizon... I would not have napped under the kitchen table each time the prep-work (and cleaning up) began. 

Bill in St Paul, thanks for pointing out the two threads: heres the other thread (and I should have posted it in the entry, above):

Suzanne, so good to know youll be in DC with JM :-)

Sophie, I like the word homey it perfectly describes how I want things to be here. Now to relax... 

Lou, Im glad you were here for the grape- and not for the weed-picking :-)

Mike, you havent missed a thing and many thanks for reading.

Julie, Eric (pictured above) mentioned how deicious carpaccio de tomates is. I hope you get a good crop this year and will enjoy them with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Nothin better! 


I pulled a few weeds in the garden at "Chateau Caniche" yesterday and can easily understand Jean-Marc's anxiety about getting the soil ready for spring in those vast vineyards. The crew looks like they had fun despite the labor and your meal looks delicious! Congratulations on the wine award.

alicia brown

Many congratulations on the award!!! Superbe!! We will look for it in the Middle West. We are going to reside in Sablet in the Fall. Are you nearby?

Kristin Espinasse

Rosalinda, ooh là là - a racier gnac? :-) 

Jen, good to learn of pop singer Yelles use of gnac. Thanks!

Kristin Espinasse

Alica, yes, we are about 20 minutes away. You (and others) are welcome to visit our vineyard--wed love to see you! Email me to set up a time and day.

Deborah Komisarek

Congratulations to your whole family and especially Jean-Marc on the well-deserved medal!!!
We return to our barge in France next month, and I see on the website that your wines are available in Lyon, so we will enjoy a drive from Roanne to Lyon to buy some! Sorry we missed you for the hike in Phoenix this month. We have been busy obtaining our long term visas and working on our french. Kristen, thank you once again for your excellent site! I am happy to report that I am actually starting to read and comprehend much better.
Deborah & Randy in Tucson.

jim Kachik

Kristin and Jean-Marc CONGRATULATIONS on the gold medal!! Well-deserved recogntion for all your hard work. Anxiety and risk are partners in life, but love and determination overcome. Keep on keepin' on.
Jim and Barbara in Oakland CA

Marianne Rankin

When I click on the link to the sound file these days, I get a dark screen with what looks like an arrow. I click on it, and nothing happens. Is there any way to fix it? Ever since it was somehow changed, it doesn't work.

Jean-Marc, felicitations! Vous meritez le prix pour vos efforts en produisant un vin superbe et naturel! Bientot, j'espere le gouter.

Kristin, I've long thought that you have adapted so well to life in France, including cooking for a crowd.


This is a wonderful insight into life on an organic vineyard and the huge effort and heart that goes into producing a gold medal award winning deserve every golden sparkle Jean-Marc (and his merry crew!)

Pat Cargill

My posts on "Mauvaise Herbes" were lost last week, too. Before reading today of others' probs, I feared I had been BANNED! Ha!

Congratulations, Jean-Marc, for the Gold! Look forward to shaking your hand and sipping the wines AND posing for another photo w/you, in D.C. 3/8.

Kristin, loved the photos today, seeing the first (?) dining alfresco this season of the intrepid weeders. It is interesting to learn the details and of all the preparation and hard work that goes into the making of Rouge-Bleu wines...helps us to appreciate them even more. Cheers to all.

Nicole Marcus

You have a way of writing that makes me feel as though I am part of your family. I will come all the way from San Francisco to help out next time you need it.
A bientot

Polly Adkins

I was so delighted to see that Jean-Marc was coming South for once, to Asheville, NC. which is about 4 hours from my home in Fort Mill, SC. A chance, I thought, to meet at least one of you and perhaps get a chance to taste a Rouge-Bleu. Unfortunately, the dinner at a small Asheville restaurant is on a weekday, and this French teacher can't take off to go. I've persuaded a friend who lives there to make a reservation and be my eyes and ears! Félicitations, Jean-Marc, on the Gold win!
Polly Adkins, SC


Congratulations to Jean-Marc for the GOLD. You are such a young vineyard, yet you have had 2 winners so far. That is so great.
Love the pictures of the guys. You are lucky to have such great friends who help out in the vineyards.

Jim in St. Paul

Great news for Jean-Marc and very well deserved! Through your beautiful and very open writing, Kristin, you show your great support for each other—humans and canines, too--and also allow us to become part of a much larger support network. It is always a pleasure to read about life in the south of France, especially when you are having nice spring weather; the descriptions and the sights in your photos help take some of our minds off the large piles of snow here in Minnesota. Hope some of this melts in time for Jean-Marc's visit. No worries about mauvaises plantes here for a while! I'm excited to meet him again in St. Paul both for the wine tasting and dinner. Enjoy your time together before he leaves for the US.

Suzanne C, Paris

Hi Kristin,
My first comment, though I've followed French Word-A-Day for most of my 3+ years in Paris. Your informative writing style and glimpse into your family life have given your blog such a heart-warming personal touch. Wanted you to know how much it is enjoyed. We're moving back to the US this summer and will be taking FWAD with me, even though I'll have to learn Spanish for our next adventure.
Best to Jean-Marc and your clan, and head scratches to Smokey and Mama B.
Hope to cross paths someday.
Best, Suzanne C

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