I walk up to the restaurant, wherein the wine dinner awaits. First thing I see: a shiny silver Airstream trailer, reminiscent somehow of the famous Chicago Cloud Gate sculpture, “The Bean”. Not a very common sight, I must admit. In fact, I have never really seen one parked on the streets of Chicago. “What in the world?…” That’s the thought that crosses my mind. An Eiffel Tower cut-out as tall as me sits in front. The sight of it explains it all. This isn’t just any Airstream trailer. This one is bringing Wines of France on a road trip of a lifetime.
Do you like French wines? I certainly do. Do you find them intimidating or pricey? They can be. But not when they are served out of the Airstream trailer. That’s the idea here. The Airstream is bringing French wines to the American people. Pulling up in a city near you is a shiny party wagon (follow Wines of France on Facebook to find the next party location). The party team’s mission: to showcase how approachable and delicious French wine can be. Through a series of events, these French beauties will be paired up with some serious American eats. Picnics, BBQs, progressive dinners, tastings and more, all packaged in a shiny Airstream trailer. Who’s ready to party?
The dinner I attended took place at Urban Union on Taylor street in Chicago. Chicago was the start of the wine tour, as luck would have it. Chef Michael Shrader created a special five course menu just for the occasion using plenty of local ingredients. Chef loves wine! In fact, his motto is written on the wall of Urban Union: “If you can’t decide, have another glass of wine… Why not?” No wonder the wine tour stopped here! We dined on delicious dishes, served family style. My favorites: a salad of dandelion greens with salted Spanish anchovies and quail egg, and braised rabbit with fried parsley, wild mushrooms and olives. All the while our fabulous Wines of France hostess made sure our glasses were never empty, pouring a variety of wines, introducing new bottles and describing them with infectious enthusiasm. The evening was a smashing success!
Moral of the story? The Airstream full of wine is coming to a city near you and, believe me, you don’t want to miss it! If you see its shiny silver shape parked on the side of the road, stop. There is a glass of wine waiting just for you. Try French wine next time you order pizza. Or with your burger at a cookout. Drink French bubbly just because. Let Wines of France show you how approachable and fun French wines can be. Get down and party with the Airstream. Have another glass of wine. Because…why not?