Patrick Baudouin, 2010 Update

The first time I tried to locate Patrick Baudouin (pictured below) at his domaine very near the little hamlet of Chaudefonds-sur-Layon, many, many years ago now, it was a complete disaster. I set out without any strong idea of where the domaine was located, other than the name of the aforementioned settlement. I drove up and down the streets – and there aren’t many, so I drove along a good number of them several times – in a fruitless search. And then, unwilling to accept defeat, I began to explore the surrounding countryside, striking out from the town in various directions, taking each road in turn. First I went up the rue du Commerce, then the rue du Stade, followed by the passage de la Montagne, in each case driving until I was lost amongst a sea of vines, with no Baudouin-dwelling in sight.

Patrick Baudouin

Exploring to the east, I came across Domaine Cady, nestled deep amongst the vineyards. It was all very reminiscent of my first ever visit to Huet in Vouvray, during which I spent what seemed like hours driving around and around the town. But in that case at least I finally found the domaine; with Baudouin, in the end, I accepted defeat. As if to celebrate this victory over a foreign visitor, the heavens then opened unleashing a torrent of hailstones which would have been impressive whatever the season, but they seemed particularly depressing taking into account that the month was June. I returned to my property to discover I had left a bedroom skylight open, and that the bedding beneath was soaked. It was not, on the whole, a successful day.

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