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Monday, November 30, 2015

Biking in Beaune

In Beaune, we rented bikes to explore the wine route.

There is a bike rental location near the train station--Bourgogne Randonnees. Cost is €18/day; helmets are an additional €1/day.

The start of the bike path is in the northwest corner of town. 

The path is well marked, paved and relatively flat.

The bike path winds through vineyards,

past stately estates & wineries

and through adorable towns. Heading south from Beaune, you will pass through Pommard, Volnay, Mersault, Puligny-Montrachet, Chassagne Montrachet and Santenay.

2015 09 25

Sunday, November 29, 2015

La Table de Guigone

We had dinner at La Table de Guigone on Place Dr. Jarrot.

Their Menu de Guigone was 3 courses for €26. One of the choices for the first course was Escargot au Beurre D'ail. Despite its name, it wasn't very garlicky.

The 2nd course was Boeuf Bourguignon. The meat was tough.

Cheese for the 3rd course. The other option was Pear in Red Wine with Blackcurrant Sorbet.

Veal Kidney with Mustard Sauce--€18. This was delicious. I love anything with mustard sauce.

1/2 bottle of Joseph Drouhin Maranges--€25. This was a nice wine but pricey.

2015 09 24

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Hotel Dieu

The main tourist attraction in Beaune is the Hotel Dieu des Hospices de Beaune. Admission is €7.50, including an audio guide. The hospital is Burgundy's largest landowner of vineyards and hosts a prestigious wine auction every year on the 3rd weekend in November

This charity hospital was built in 1443 and remained in operation until 1971.

The hospital is beautiful with a multi-colored tile roof. The decorative roof is only on the interior of the building. From the outside, it is an austere building, so as not to attract looters.

Close up of the Burgundian roof.

Bed in the Paupers' Ward. This large room was lined with beds along both walls. Because the concept of infection and hand washing to prevent it weren't known until the 19th century, you were actually worse off in the ward than outside the hospital. People came here to die--the first hospice.

Painting showing patients being treated in 1949. Nuns served as nurses.

Jar in the pharmacy, containing Theriaca. This was a mixture of herbs, wine and opium. No wonder it was considered a panacea.

Polyptych of the Last Judgment by Flemish painter van der Weyden.

2015 09 24

Friday, November 27, 2015


Beaune is a small town of 25,000. It's a compact town surrounded by a ring road.

Watchtower on Rampart Madeleine. A portion of the original wall surrounding the town remains.

Place Carnot--a lovely park with a carousel and interesting statues.

Collegiale Notre-Dame

Tapestries depicting the life of the Virgin Mary are found inside Notre Dame

Place Doctor Jarrot.

Beaune is an atmospheric town with cobble stone roads and beautiful stone buildings.

2015 09 24

Thursday, November 26, 2015

La Cave de L'Ange Gardien & Brasserie le Monge

We arrived in Beaune just a little before 11 am, in time for our wine education and tasting at La Cave de L'Ange Gardien. We spent 2 1/2 hours getting educated about Burgundian wines. We learned about the different areas in Burgundy and then we tasted around 12 wines, including an amazing bottle of Cassis. The class was free and we ended up purchasing a case of wine. They even packed it up in a styrofoam box, which we were able to check in on the flight home. US citizens are allowed to bring home 3 bottles of wine each. We declared the wine and showed it to Customs but they didn't charge any additional duty.

After our class, we were starving and it was nearly 2 pm. There weren't a lot of places still open but we found Brasserie le Monge.

Brasserie le Monge is located at 7 Place Monge.

Croque Monsieur with Green Salad--7.50. Ham sandwich with b├ęchamel sauce and cheese.

Plat du Jour--calf liver--€9.50. This was actually quite good.

2015 09 24

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Athanor Hotel, Beaune

Our base in Beaune was the Athanor Hotel, located in the heart of the inner town. It's a converted 16th century convent and the rooms are very atmospheric. There is parking in a free lot at the end of the street near the ring road.

Hotel Athanor is located at 11 ave de la Republic. 

The weekly Saturday morning market starts right outside the hotel. Beaune has a smaller market on Wednesday mornings near Place de la Halle.

Our room looked out on a pedestrian street.

The room was clean, modern and had free wifi. Best part was it cost $89/night.

Modern bathroom.

2015 09 24

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Route des Grands Crus

From Dijon, we drove south on D122 and headed to Beaune along the Route des Grand Crus. Beaune is just 44 km from Dijon. We drove through the villages of Chenove, Marsannay-la-Cote, Couchey, Fixin, Gevrey-Chambertin, Morey-Saint-Denis, Chambolle-Musigny, Vougeot, Vosne-Romanee and Nuits-Saint-Georges.

Burgundy wines are divided into Bourgogne, village, premier cru and grand cru. With Bourgogne wines, the grapes can come from anywhere in Burgundy. Village identifies the exact village where they were grown. Premier cru and grand cru locate actual plots of land. The grand cru are generally located on the slopes.

The village of Marsannay in Bourgogne.

Statue of grape harvesters in Marsannay

Clos de Beze in the village of Chambertin.

Chateaux in Morey-Saint-Denis.

Village of Morey-Saint-Denis. The villages on the Route des Grands Crus were tiny. Blink and you miss it.

Chateaux du Clos de Vougeot. You can visit the chateaux and winery in a 45-minute tour for €7.

2015 09 24

Monday, November 23, 2015

Le Bouchon du Palais

Dinner was at Le Bouchon du Palais, ranked #7 on TripAdvisor. We had stopped in during our walking tour and reserved a table for dinner. 3-course dinner was €28.

This pinot was not a good as the pinot fin we had at Chez Leon. This was €26.

Camembert Frit et sa Confiture de Myrtille--fried Brie with bilberry jam. I had never heard of bilberry but it tasted like blueberry.

Cervelle d'Agneau Meuniere--lamb brains. This was lightly fried and very well prepared. This was my favorite dish of the evening.

Coq au Vin a l'ancienne with scalloped potatoes. The chicken was tender and the sauce was thin but tasty.

Andouillette AAAAA a la Dijonnaise--sausage stuffed with intestine. This was actually a lot better than the andouillette we had in Paris. The flavor was much milder.

Cheese Plate--Comte (firm cow's milk cheese), Citeaux (soft cow's milk cheese), Epoisses (soft, pungent cow's milk cheese)

Overall, I liked Chez Leon better than Le Bouchon du Palais and both better than 1 Michelin-star Stephane Derbord.

2015 09 23

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Owl's Trail, Zola Loop

Another loop off the Owl's Trail was the Zola Loop.

The old Carmelite Convent.

Jean de Berbisey garden. Notice the trompe l'oeil at the back of the garden.

Place Emile Zola has a fountain adorned with frogs.

Tiny electric bus.

Meringues are popular in the local bakeries.

A sable--French shortbread cookie.

Giant Macarons.

2015 09 23