As is the case every year we undertake a range of renovations here at Les Deux Platanes in preparation for the first guests. The cottage garden is an important feature and 2014 will be no exception. For this year I have an idea for something a little different and for this I need a wine barrel end. So off we went earlier this week to search for this illusive item. We know of what we could call an antique shop in Levroux, a small town 40 minutes drive from Clion. This small town is the location of an amazing Aladdins cave of items that some would put in the rubbish bin and others class a wonderful find. Now this 'shop' is not for the faint of heart, it's a labyrinth of narrow isles, each side piled from floor to ceiling with all and every manner of items from boxes of paint to rare lamps, paraffin blowlamps, models, crockery of every description - the list goes on and on. Would we find our barrel end? We quickly found a selection of clocks, one made from a wine barrel end, not quite suitable. Another 25 minutes and we came across a genuine miniature wine barrel, in need of renovation but the perfect shape and size for the project. A little negotiation and we agreed a price.
|The barrel - perfect for the project!|
I have now removed the four steel rings and the oak segments fell apart revealing the blackened inside stained from its many years of holding red wines. The next stage is some gentle renovation to help ensure the barrel survives outside - more news to follow.
From Levroux and the barrel safely in the boot of the car we travelled on to the small village of Bourge le chateau, to enjoy lunch at an excellent small restaurant. We both enjoyed a very nice four course lunch for only 12 Euro before returning on small roads on what was a brilliant hot spring afternoon.
Details of the above locations and routes can be found in the cottage guides.