Vast and Important Vineyards: The First Edition of the Guide Michelin for Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia
I am still on vacation so a post about Guide Michelin seems appropriate. The first edition of Guide Michelin Maroc, Algérie, Tunisie was published in 1929. It is full of itineraries for automobiles several of which pass by or through vineyards. In fact the very first itinerary, “Alger-Bougie” passes through Maison-Carree a region full of “d’importants vignobles.” These vineyards are varyingly described as d’importants, vastes, grands, and une plaine au milieu au vignobles. Despite all of the routes near vineyards, recommendations for hotels and restaurants, there are no recommendations about wine. The vocabulary section does translates vin in all three countries as cherab, though it is accented differently, as well as raisin as aneb or ineb.The spread of automobiles and itinerary guides does raise the question of how vineyard tourism developed or changed. But that is a subject for another post. In the mean time I suggest you flip through the pages to look at the great images of Bibendum.
 Bureau d’itinéraires Michelin et Cie (Paris). Maroc, Algérie, Tunisie. 1929. Gallica Bibliotheque Numerique. URL: http://catalogue.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/cb341361500
I have a particular interest in the earliest photographic images of vineyards and wineries. There appears to be a good but small set of these photographs that were taken in Australia. This particular early image not only shows neatly trained vines but a substantial stone residence. The soils seem to be of gravelly soil. Do you think the building in the background is the winery?
 “Double-storey bluestone residence with verandah.” Nettleton, Charles. ca. 1860 – ca. 1870. Trove. National Library of Australia. URL: http://trove.nla.gov.au/work/177671709?q=+&versionId=193453018
The Tokay vineyard image featured in this post was believed “to be the largest single vineyard this side of the Rocky Mountains” according to quotation from”The Wine and Fruit Grower” published in February 1883. This image is sourced from a “Tokay vineyard” pamphlet which is promotion material comprised of articles and letters. This pamphlet even contains an extract from a United States Consular Report describing the exportation of adulterated French wine. Clearly it would be better to drink this wine from North Carolina rather than the “poisonous” imported French wine.
The Tokay vineyard was planted with American varieties including Scuppernong, Norton, Cynthiana, Hermann, Martha, Delaware, Cottages, Telegraph, and others. From these 60 acres of vines some 25,000 gallons of wine were produced from the 1882 harvest. It was hoped that the 1883 harvest would yield 40,000 gallons. There was a variety of dry, sweet, white, and red wines produced. Of this selection, not only would the Old Brown Sherry do “credit to any gentleman’s sideboard and private cellar” but the wine was “highly esteemed by the medical profession” and often prescribed in “certain kidney ailments”. Sounds like a great reason to have a glass of wine!
 Green, W. J. Tokay Vineyard, near Fayetteville, N.C.: with essay on grape-culture by the proprietor. 1883. URL: http://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/009599786
It is the last week of summer before school starts up again. As I am spending my time outside at the beach today’s post features a great map of Algeria. Make sure to visit the link below so you can zoom in all the way.
 Gouvernement général de l’Algérie, Direction de l’Agriculture, du Commerce et de la Colonisation. Service cartographique. Carte viti-vinicole de l’Algérie / gravée par A. Simon. 1927. URL: http://catalogue.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/cb40710733s
Piri Reis was a 16th century Ottoman admiral who famously published a series of maps in his Book on Navigation. The image of Rhodes Island featured in today’s post is from a later edition of his book that dates to the end of the 17th century. If you look at the bottom of the island you will see over a dozen gardens. Do you think any of those are vineyards?
 Reis, Piri. Book on Navigation. W.658. The Walters Art Museum.
The weather in Washington, DC turned just moderately warm after last week’s torrential rain. With the windows open our house was neither cool nor warm. To match the weather I opted to open what I hoped was a lighter wine. It turned out that I did. The 2011 Dveri-Pax, Benedict Red Cuvee smells like a wine from Austria which may not be surprising given that it is a blend of Blaufrankisch and Zweigelt. It clearly demonstrated the capabilities of the Dveri-Pax Winery which has already been highlighted by Decanter Magazine. I recommend you blindly serve a few glasses of this to your friends! It smells and drinks great right now. This wine was purchased at MacArthur Beverages.
2011 Dveri-Pax, Benedict Red Cuvee – $18
Imported by Winebow. This wine is a blend of 70% Blaufrankisch, 20% Pinot Noir, and 10% Zweigelt that was aged for 18 months in half large Slavonian oak barrels and half French oak barrels. Alcohol 13.5%. There was a good fragrant nose. In the mouth there was a gentle start with the mouth following the nose. There were some tart blue flavors on the tongue, ripe texture, and though lighter in flavor the wine still coated the tongue. It was a solid wine that finished with a good mixture of graphite, blue, and black fruit. ** Now-2015.
The Facebook comments about the vineyards of India inspired me to post an historic advertisement for wine sold in Bombay during 1845. One could certainly drink well with Chateau Haut-Brion, Chateau Lafite, Chateau Latour, and Chateau Margaux listed. Though the list is heavy on the French wines it also includes Sherry, Port, Madeira, and German wines.
 Classified ad 2 — no title. (1845, Apr 02). The Bombay Times and Journal of Commerce (1838-1859) Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/233698344?accountid=14784