Since the Bruno novels wax lyrical about the merits of these wines, I was invited along to help promote these splendid wines, and so I made considerable use of R L Stevenson's phrase that "wine is bottled poetry" and Victor Hugo's great line that "God made water, but man made wine." (Some of the best Bergerac wine-makers are women, like Amelie Montfort, Nicole Maury, Patricia Atkinson, Katherina Mowinckel and Caro Feely.)
A highpoint was a splendid dinner with Karl-Friedrich Scheufele and his wife Christine, who run the Chopard watch business and the Bacchus vinotheques in Switzerland, and have each read all the Bruno books. They recently bought Chateau Monestier la Tour, which dates back to the 12th century, and are producing terrific wines and using their Chopard marketing expertise to help promote Bergerac wines in Switzerland and Germany.
Two more of my favourite Bergerac vineyards were also there: Chateau les Tours des Verdots, where David Fourtout makes spectacularly elegant wines, and Chateau Thenac, whose white wines have to among the best in south-western France.