by Fred McMillin
for July 9, 1997
Jumpin' Jehoshaphat, Whadda Muscat!
Prologue: "The long stretch of Mediterranean seaboard from Marseilles to the Pyrenes has been for centuries past, and still is, the home of the Muscat grape. [Most of] the best dessert wines of France come from the coastal vineyards"...by the legendary Andre Simon in his "The Noble Grapes and the Great Wines of France"
The Rest of the Story: One of those "best dessert" Muscats is made at the east, Rhone end of that coastal region. The winery is named Domaine de Coyeux, located northeast of Avignon at the town of Beaumes de Venise. Its Muscat vines are now 40 years old and at their peak. Even the most hardened critics call Coyeux Muscat "incredibly rich." To its delight, Paris discovered this wine a decade ago. Now it's your turn.
1994 Muscat de Beaumes de Venise
Postscript: Make this the feature of your dessert course. I suggest serving it with thin slices of semi-sharp white cheese on slightly-sweet crackers. If you prefer a more conventional dessert, serve with a fruit pie and French vanilla ice cream.
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