纽约时报 | 将红酒沉入海底的法国小镇圣马洛

The French town that throws wine in the sea 将红酒沉入海底的法国小 […]

The French town that throws wine in the sea

Europe’s highest tides sneak up on tourists in St-Malo, France, lapping against medieval granite ramparts and onto salty pavements. But Malouins, as locals are called, embrace the raging tide with a graceful kinship.


The Malouin community has always been tied to the ebb and flow of the sea. Founded on Brittany’s northern coast by Gauls in the 1st Century BC, the port city stands where the mouth of the Rance river meets the English Channel. Because water flows in and out of the bay in both directions, its rising tides are legendary.


In summer, sunscreen-doused English tourists wander off ferries from Portsmouth, while the French flock here for summer breezes and Breton savoir-faire. But St-Malo and her tides belong to locals, who welcome the constant salt spray with a chuckle of gratitude.


“When I’m in St-Malo, even if I can’t see the sea, I can feel her,” said Yannick Heude, a local sommelier and wine merchant. “I know she’s right here, that she’s always nearby. And if I’m too far away, then she is, too.”

“我在圣马洛的时候,即使看不见海,也能感受到。”当地品酒师兼酒商赫德(Yannick Heude)说:“我知道她就在那里,永远在我身边。即使我走远了,她也在那。”

As proprietor of the local wine shop Cave de l’Abbaye St-Jean and a partner at local cooking school L’École du Goût, Heude keeps one foot in local gastronomy and the other in the bay. The sea imbues the local culture with what Heude describes as ‘a salty side’ that’s equally present in local dishes as it is in Malouin identity.

作为当地圣约翰修道院酒庄(Cave de l'Abbaye St-Jean)的庄主,以及当地烹饪学校L'École du Goût的合伙人,赫德的工作一半与当地美食有关,一半与海湾有关。他说,大海孕育着当地的文化,“海盐味的配菜”不仅出现在当地菜肴中,也是马尔维纳精神的一部分。

“We’ve got la terre et la mer [the land and the sea] that blend to help our chefs create extraordinary cuisine. It’s simple, precise and invigorating,” he said.

他说:“土地和大海(la terre et la mer)融合在一起,启发我们的厨师创造出非凡的菜肴,它简单、精细且富有生机。”

During a boating trip 15 years ago with friends, Heude found himself pondering a seaborne idea. “There was a fisherman, a sailor, a restaurateur and myself C a sommelier,” he explained. “One of us was expecting a child, and said ‘Listen, I should put some wine underwater to celebrate my son’s birth.’ And I said, ‘Well, I can organise that if you like’.” While setting aside a bottle of wine to age in celebration of a child’s birth is a common practice among oenophiles, Heude explained that this suggestion to age the wine in the sea was unprecedented. But what started as a small feat C bringing 12 bottles of Fiefs Vendéens wine from the Loire Valley to the bottom of St-Malo’s harbour C became l’Immersion, an annual tradition that has evolved into a national phenomenon.

在15年前与朋友的一次出海途中,赫德萌生了海上运输的想法。他回忆道:“当时有捕鱼工、水手、餐馆老板和我这个品酒师。其中有一个人的孩子将要出生了,他说,‘我想在海底存几瓶酒,来庆祝儿子的诞生。’我回应说:‘好,你愿意的话我可以帮你。’” 赫德解释说,虽然专门陈几瓶酒来庆祝孩子出生是品酒师的常见做法,但是把酒藏在海里确实前无古人。最开始,将12瓶来自卢瓦尔河谷旺代产区(Fiefs Vendéens)的葡萄酒沉入圣马洛码头的海底只是一个小小的举动,但后来逐渐演变成一年一度的沉酒传统,并发展为全国性的行为。

There’s an undeniable poetry to the emergence of sea-aged wine in a town that’s so proud of its maritime heritage. St-Malo and its harbour first rose to prominence as one of the primary ports of call for the French spice trade. Malouins voyaged as far as Québec (the voyages of Jacques Cartier C a Malouin C led to France laying claim to Canada) and the Falkland Islands (originally named Îles Malouines in honour of early Malouin settlers). In 1590, St-Malo declared independence from France in an effort to protect its maritime economy from the Wars of Religion, adopting the motto, ‘Not French, not Breton, but Malouin’. Although the autonomous Republic of St-Malo only lasted for three years, the Malouin identity continued in a spirit of unbridled self-determination, inextricably anchored to the sea.

圣马洛以海洋文化遗产为骄傲,发明了海底陈酿葡萄酒,这确实充满诗意。这里曾是法国香料贸易的主要港口之一,也因此开始变得广为人知。马尔维纳人最远曾到达魁北克(马尔维纳人卡蒂埃 [Jacques Cartier] 的航行令加拿大曾经成为法属殖民地)以及福克兰群岛(原名马尔维纳群岛 [ÎlesMalouines],以纪念早期来自圣马洛的定居者)。1590年,圣马洛宣布从法国独立,以保护其航海经济免受宗教战争的影响,并且采用座右铭――“我们不是法国人,不是布列塔尼人,而是马尔维纳人”。虽然圣马洛共和国仅存在了三年,但是马尔维纳人却保持了坚定不移的民族自决精神,宛如锚定在海底。

Heude continued to place wine on the sea floor every year, gathering his friends to taste the previous year’s bounty. Beyond the initial resonance of the idea of sea-aging wine, there’s also a science to the process that Heude and his friends pegged with sheer intuition. Off the coast of Brittany, the temperature of the ocean floor hovers at 9-10C C the equivalent temperature of a deep wine cellar C while the water shields the wine from damaging UV rays. Plus, the twice-daily ebb and flow of some of the biggest tides in Europe mirror a technique used to age wine, particularly Champagne, known as remuage. The process of slowly tilting wine as it ages keeps the sediment from settling on the sides and bottom of the bottle and maintains the visual clarity of the wine.


The wines Heude selects change every year, though he is sure to include bottles of both regular and sparkling, and the differences in flavour of sea-aged wines varies by cuvée (the type, blend and batch of wine), which is the fun of it all. As a rule of thumb, Heude says, wines that have only been lightly filtered are poised for the most remarkable transformations underwater. As the tides move the natural sediment in the bottle, the flavour notes of the wine deepen. The effect is particularly enthralling with sparkling wine, as the changing tides refine the carbon dioxide bubbles to a crisp finish.


After discovering the effects of sea-aging, Heude decided to make annual wine deposits to the harbour floor. Every year, on the first weekend of June, 100 gourmands and sommeliers from across France purchase tickets to experience the phenomenon in person.


The day-long affair begins with l’Immersion itself. Curious tourists watch as Heude and his team load up a fishing boat with nearly 700 wine bottles in the shadow of Tour Solidor, a 14th-Century tower originally built to control the entrance to the Rance river. Wine bottles are stacked in pallet boxes built for shellfish producers C fitting for a ritual so intimately tied to the local food culture. Extra holes in each box ensure water and seaweed can flow around the bottles during their year-long sojourn at the bottom of the bay. “We saddle them up, and then they’re ready to go,” Heude said.

这项长达一天的盛事从沉酒活动开始。好奇的游客待在建造于14世纪、用于控制兰斯河入口的索利德尔塔(Tour Soilder)的影子里,看着赫德和他的团队用近700瓶红酒把渔船装满。红酒瓶被堆放在原是为贝类生产商设计的卡板箱里,非常适合这个与当地的饮食文化有紧密关联的活动。每个货架箱底另有小孔,用于保证在这一年中,海水和海草能够在酒瓶间自由移动。赫德说:“我们把这些酒准备好,然后就能开始了。”

Once they’ve been brought out into the harbour, the boxes are lowered 15m to the sea floor with a trawler. A diver loosely anchors the boxes with enough leeway for each one to move in harmony with the tides. Then they pick up last year’s drop off (this year’s haul) in preparation for a boisterous unveiling. After 12 months of anticipation, Heude and his team push each box to the centre of the crowd. Extra treasures C shellfish, handfuls of seaweed C swirl around the barnacle-laden bottles, giving everyone a glimpse of what the bottles witness during a year on the sea floor.


A frenzy ensues as Heude invites onlookers to dive into a free degustation of the region’s gastronomic riches. Sourdough bread from Philippe Renault’s bakery in Dinard, Jean-Yves Bordier’s award-winning butter, oysters from Cancale and tripe from nearby Normandy round out the abundant spread. Amid the joyful flurry, expert sommeliers crack open the bottles to compare sea-aged wines with their cellar-aged counterparts. These tastings unfurl meticulous analyses by expert palates C but this is just the beginning.

赫德邀请观众免费品尝地方美食,这引起了一阵骚动。来自迪纳尔的雷诺(Philippe Renault)带来了自家面包店的酸面包,波迪尔(Jean-Yves Bordier)带来了曾荣获大奖的黄油,此外还有康卡勒生蚝和诺曼底牛肚。这些美食来自法国各地,品种丰富。在欢乐的气氛当中,专业品酒师将海底陈酒和他们的地窖藏酒对比。这些大师一边品酒,一边开始仔细分析其中风味――而这仅仅是个开始。

After the wine tasting, participants who purchased tickets for l’Immersion in advance of the festival accompany the coastguard organisation Société Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer (SNSM) on a short journey to Cézembre, a small, uninhabited blip of sand off the coast of St-Malo that served as a German naval battery in World War Two. Most of its sweeping landscape remains enclosed by barbed wire because the island’s innermost areas haven’t been cleared of land mines, but the shore provides a safe and scenic venue for a riotous Malouin feast. Plates of fried seafood and salt-marsh lamb pile up next to more butter, freshly baked bread and bottles of sea-aged wine, still dripping with salty water. “That’s a little more rock’n’roll. It’s a big party and everyone loves that, too,” Heude said.

参加者在节庆前预先购买了沉酒活动的门票,品酒结束后,他们会在国家救援组织(SociétéNationale de SauvetageenMer,SNDS)海上警卫队的陪同下,开启塞泽布岛(Cézembre)的旅程。塞泽布岛是圣马洛海滩附近的一个小型、无人沙滩,曾是二战时期的德意志海军炮台。由于岛屿深处尚有未清理的地雷,因此大部分的景观都被铁丝网封锁,不过游客可以在小岛的海岸上安全地一览壮阔的马尔维纳美景。烤好的海鲜、盐渍的羊肉堆在碟子里,旁边还有黄油、新鲜出炉的烤面包,和滴着海水的海底陈酒。赫德说:“这挺有摇滚风范的。这是个盛大的派对,大家也都很喜欢。”

At its heart, l’Immersion is much more than a wine tasting. It’s a celebration of Malouins’ unceasing connection to the sea.


“That’s what has cradled us since our infancy, and at the end of the day, we can’t do without it,” Heude said. “Whether it’s in the arts or in food, it’s in everything: it’s there in wine tastings, in the shrimp, in the scallops, in the fish we catch, in the spring vegetables, in new potatoes. We’ve got it all here. We’ve truly got it all.”


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