One last update from the southern Rhone wine area. Friends Tom & Cherie arranged a wine tasting at Domaine Piaugier. They had met one of the owners, Sophie, at at tasting in Connecticut. That tasting was the inspiration for choosing this location for our trip.
Sophie was a fabulous host. She took us through the winery, then into the cellar for a tasting from the barrels. We got to taste all the 2007 vintage wines before they are bottled. Sophie said she thinks this vintage is their best since 1990! The wines were great. I only wish I could carry some with me. Luckily Domaine Piaugier does export to the US and can be found, if you know where to look, i.e. I'm not telling you where so I can make sure I get some! :-)