The brunt of a severe two month confinement is over. Time for movement, sunshine and celebration!

More livestream wine tastings are coming this week.


Bordeaux Then & Now with Chris Phelps – via Zoom.

On Thursday, Via Zoom, I will join Chris Phelps, who is a renowned Napa Valley winemaker in California. Chris studied viticulture and enology at the University of Bordeaux, and later worked at renowned Château Petrus in Saint-Émilion. Chris and his son Josh will host this 30-minute event.

Log in information is below. Also, this is a Forbes article I wrote about Chris and his Ad Vivum wine, and about his son Josh, owner of Grounded Wine Company.

11.00 a.m. PST, 2.00 p.m. EST CK, 7.00 p.m. BST and 8.00 p.m. CEST.

The invite from Chris Phelps is here:

Greetings, Friends.

It is my great pleasure to invite you to Episode 2 in our Zoom Webinar series: “Bordeaux, Then & Now.” I will be joined by Tom Mullen, intrepid wine writer and Bordeaux-based contributor for Forbes. 

Here is a link to Tom’s April 2020 article in Forbes, in which he looks back on my winemaking experiences, as well as those of my son, Josh (Grounded Wine Co.):  Forbes article link.
Please use the link below to register and participate in Episode 2, this Thursday, May 21st, at 11:00 AM Pacific Time, 2:00 PM Eastern Time, 8:00 PM Bordeaux Time. The session will be limited to 30 minutes, so please join us promptly. After you register, kindly reply to this email to RSVP. Webinar Link.

Pour yourself a glass of something, whether it’s Bordeaux, California, or something different altogether, and put your feet up. Tom and I will chat about the wines we’re drinking, and what’s happening in Bordeaux now, versus what was taking place when I first started going there in the 1980s.

As always, please invite your friends and family to join the party, the more the merrier! I am looking forward to talking to Tom Mullen, and all of you, this coming Thursday. In the meantime, please stay safe.

Chris Phelps – Owner, AD VIVUM

Chris and Josh Phelps (photo courtesy of Phelps)

Bordeaux Tastings – Left and Right Bank – via Instagram

On Friday, May 22nd, via Instagram, I’ll do another round of ‘Virtual En Primeurs,’ tasting wines from both Bordeaux right bank (from Saint-Émilion and Pomerol) and from Bordeaux left bank (from Saint-Estèphe and Haut-Medoc). A winemaker will join me for the tasting.

Instagram: tjlmullen

9.00 a.m. PST, 12.00 p.m. EST CK, 5.00 p.m. BST and 6.00 p.m. CEST.


Livestreams 7 (Abruzzo, Italy) and livestream 8 (Cru Bourgeois) are available on my YouTube channel, or click the links below.

Livestream 7: Abruzzo Wines From Italy, Tasting Three Wines and Interview with Valentina di Camillo of Tenuta I Fauri.

Livestream 8: Crus Bourgeois Wines From Bordeaux, Interview with Armelle Cruse and Tasting Eight Wines

1. CHEF.

Again, my own confinement cooking. That’s me on the right. Photo taken with friends in the garden, celebrating the end of a two-month confinement. Nationalities in photo (clockwise from me): USA, South Africa, Russia, Germany, France, France, Canada.

Rue Saint Simon, Blaye, Bordeaux


Crevettes and green asparagus. Fry the crevettes (shrimp) in a mixture of butter, olive oil, diced garlic, sliced chilis or red peppers and paprika and serve with steamed asparagus.

Crevettes and fresh asparagus

Frangipane pie and Bordeaux Rosé. Frangipane is an almond flavored cream included in a tart. Rather than cover the frangipane with another layer of pie crust, I simply baked it open-topped, as a pie.

Frangipane and rosé


Both wines are from Hubert de Boüard (owner of Château Angélus and consultant for dozens of international wineries).

I matched the main dish with a 100% Bordeaux Sauvignon Blanc. Although asparagus is a challenge to match with any wine, the buttery crevettes made this food combination dynamite with Sauvignon.

For the frangipane dessert, I matched it with De Boüard’s rosé made from selected, hand harvested plots of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes (equal parts each). The almond taste of the dessert paired with the citric acidity of the wine.


Bordeaux châteaux are opening up again after the covid-19 pandemic worldwide lockdown. Next week I’ll drive to Saint-Émilion to sample wines from Château Angélus, and after the first of June will begin traveling by ferry across the Gironde estuary to the Médoc.

The mighty Gironde estuary, separating right and left bank Bordeaux

Although renowned for its red wines, Bordeaux used to produce a far greater percentage of whites decades ago. Today, Bordeaux white wines are some of the best in the world. A typical blend is usually Sauvignon Blanc dominant (which provides acidity, freshness and tropical fruit aromas) with a smaller percentage of Semillon (to add roundness and aromas of honey and apricots) and sometimes a percentage of Muscadelle (which adds richness; it is often used to make sweet wines).

Thanks again for tuning in!


This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Robin Minch, a business development executive in Florida, wrote the following:

    I hope you are doing well! I LOVE these posts and have shared them with others.

  2. Michael Cosgrave, based in Vietnam, wrote the following:

    Good morning Tom,
    You’ve done it again and shared France and brought it back to life in heart, mind and palate.
    You’re as close as I can get from Ha Noi to Bordeaux at the moment..
    The crevettes and asparagus dish is very appealing. I can only imagine how good the Rose is.
    If you’re still playing with asparagus, try grilling them in a little olive oil on a thick cast iron plate and just before serving drizzle some very good quality balsamic over them and consume straight away while hot. This might challenge and compliment a good Bordeaux white. I have only done this dish with the green asparagus and not the white which I think are a bit softer and more absorbing of other matter. Most likely wrong.
    Have found time to enjoy your you tube broadcasts and begrudge the fact that I struggle to see them live.
    The podcast this week with the Bordeaux trained American is something I’m waiting to see on You Tube.
    Thanks again for sending these to me.

    Best wishes MCosgrave

  3. From Lara Sanan in Bordeaux –

    “Loving the look for your blog – so professional!”

  4. Géraldine Bertrand of Saint-Émilion wrote – “Bonne combinaison!!!”

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