Tain-l’Hermitage, Tournon-Sur-Rhône, Valence

Friday, July 12. Tain-l’Hermitage and Tournon-Sur-Rhône are just across the Rhône for each other.  https://fr.mappy.com/itineraire/tain-l-hermitage/tournon-sur-rhone#/8/M2/TItinerary/IFRTain-l’Hermitage%2026600|TOTournon-sur-Rhône%2007300|MOvoiture|PRcar|RI0/N151.12061,6.11309,4.83645,45.06836/Z16/  Chapoutier is one of the major négotiants in Tain, producing Côte-Rôties red wine solely from Syrah grapes, and white Hermitages only from Marsanne grapes https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marsanne .  On this side of the suspension bridge, Valrhona gourmet chocolate has given rise to an exclusive école for chefs specializing in chocolate desserts.This domaine is distinguished by its excellence in wine making and by having labels incorporating braille. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chapoutier  In Tournon, St. Joseph is famous.

We were driven in a small train through the towns, taken to a hill planted with vineyards overlooking the Rhône Valley, then off to Valence by coach to visit a local Michelin awarded gastronomic restaurant and cooking school, owned by Anne-Sophie Pic https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne-Sophie_Pic .  We had a cooking lesson/demonstration to produce a Poached Egg over Tomato Chutney, black olives, capers, topped with tomato foam, complete with instructions to take home.  Good luck with that! This was followed by a most delightful wine and cheese paring: Banyuls-Michael Chapoutier with Roquefort; Ventoux-Domaine de Fondrèche with Picodon; and  Côtes du Rhône-Michael Chapoutier with Camembert De Normandie. And the topper was a piece of Valrhona chocolate. No hunger leaving that place on the way to MS Emerald and the sail to Arles.