While in Paris, my family and I participated in a group wine-tasting class (taught in English) at La Dernière Goutte, a charming wine boutique in Saint-Germain-des-Prés. Seated in the stone-walled back room wine cave of this cozy, rustic shop, we embarked on a journey encompassing all of the French wine regions.
Juan Sanchez, owner of La Dernière Goutte, is a charming ex-pat who has been in the wine business for 25 years. With his well-honed palate and genuine enthusiasm for teaching, Juan’s classes are suitable for wine lovers at any level.
Juan stated that his goal is, “to really give his clients an appreciation of French wine, and take the mystery out of it. Whether you are a tourist, or living in Paris, you will become more confident about tasting, ordering and buying French wine.” He accomplishes this by giving you a vocabulary pertaining to wine, using all the commonly known wine jargon, so that you can learn to describe and communicate your taste to a sommelier or shop-keeper. The idea is to get you to want to learn more, and to gain confidence, and we did.
As we tasted and described seven wines, we began to grasp that at a more practical level, these principles would help reduce the risk of getting a bottle we did not like.
Equipped with a map of France, Juan related the different wine regions to the grapes and their taste. He brings gems from each region to the table. He also discussed food and wine pairing, what to notice on a label, and how to decipher restaurant wine lists (which I have always found intimidating!).
La Dernière Goutte is a definite stop in Paris if you want to experience an exceptional and insightful wine class. And if you find yourself in the 6th arrondissement on Fridays and Saturdays, don’t miss the free wine tastings!
La Dernière Goutte, 6 Rue de Bourbon le Chateau, 75006 Paris. Tel: 01 43 29 11 62. Class size is limited to 10 participants. Includes over 2 hours of lecture and tasting. Price is 55E per person