First and foremost, following my posts about "Le Nez du Vin" that I received for my birthday, I am dedicating this post to Jean Lenoir, who passed away earlier this year at the age of 85, and send all my thoughts and sincere condolences to his family and loved ones.
Jean Lenoir was born in the Cote d'Or, Burgundy, in 1937. He fell in love with wine after tasting a Chassagne Montrachet opened for his 18th birthday.
After working as an educator and cultural leader, he became the director of an education and cultural centre. At 40, he shifted his career path and became the deputy director of the Maison de la Culture in Chalon-sur-Saône.
Wanting to incorporate taste and smell into his work, he attended courses at the Burgundy Oenological Centre (INRA, Beaune) under the guidance of renowned oenologist, researcher, and sensory analysis pioneer Max Léglise.
Through this experience, he gained an appreciation for the vast array of aromas found in wine and the difficulty of distinguishing them.
In 1978, he teamed up with Georges Pertuiset (voted France's Best Sommelier in December 1980) to offer the first introductory wine-tasting course at la Maison de la Culture.
Lenoir's pioneering approach treated wine as an art form worthy of inclusion in cultural institutions alongside music and painting.
While in Manosque, he crossed paths with Olivier Baussan, the founder of L'Occitane en Provence. In exchange for a crème de cassis from Burgundy, Jean received extractions of fresh essential oils of thyme and rosemary from Olivier.
These extracts became the foundation of Jean's collection of 120 aromas, which he used to teach initiation courses throughout France. His courses were met with great success everywhere he went.
In 1981, inspired by artist Daniel Spoerri's concept of a book object, Jean created Le Nez du Vin, which included both writings and scents. With a preface by Jules Chauvet and Jacques Pertuisais, this "revolution of the palate" was received with surprise and admiration. And the rest is history.
This illustration is my little contribution to commemorating his life's work.
He created the "Nez du Café" in 1997 and the "Nez du Whisky" in 2013, working with renowned experts Charles MacLean and Martine Nouet.
Over the past 40 years, thousands of “noses" of professionals and amateurs around the world have been educated with the "Le Nez du Vin" kits. Translated into 11 languages, these olfactory alphabets provide a universal language for describing wine and sharing its pleasure. More than just a simple training tool, the aroma bottles stimulate our emotions by opening doors to the soul and awakening what can be very distant memories.
Thank you, Jean Lenoir, for your work and essential contribution to our civilisation's wine education.
NB: All info above edited by and for this article, courtesy of www.lenez.com
Le Nez du Vin
My 50th Birthday occurred earlier this month. It was nice and simple, nothing fancy. Just the way I like it. After eating at a local Hot-Pot restaurant, the kids and I returned home, where they surprised me with a cake, homemade cards, drawing pens and two presents.
There was a second cake from my colleagues, who insisted I bring it home and have it with my kids, so I did.
The two presents (from my kids and their mum) were very nice and thoughtful, as I have wanted to have Jean Lenoir « Le nez du vin » for years, and that night my dream came true. What a nice present! Thank you, guys! 🙏
They could have bought me one of the smaller "coffrets", and I would have been happy too. Yet, they went all out and offered me the biggest one, "La Crème de la crème", Jean Lenoir's "Chef d'Oeuvre", the 54 aromas Master Kit. I was speechless.
I had used "Le Nez du Vin" since 1996 when I was studying for my Sommelier Diploma at the "Lycée d'Hôtellerie et de Tourisme de Gascogne", a technical school for tourism and hotel management, located in Talence and part of the Bordeaux Academy. Yet, I never owned one, despite my desire to do so. Well, now, I do. 😁👍🍷
And the cherry on the cake is that they also bought me the « 12 Wine Faults » coffret, which I also wanted for a long time, and perfectly complements the 54 Masterkit. Thank you for that, too. Much appreciated.
The pictures above and below speak for themselves. What great presents! Thank you again to you 3, much appreciated. You’ve made my day! I am a lucky man and a blessed father! Love you, kids!
Despite the pictures above, a few people, unfamiliar with the product, asked me to further explain what's in the boxes (coffrets), so I made a little video and posted it on YouTube. The video is in French as the few people who asked me are French, and I thought it would be easier for them.
And to conclude this post a picture of my cakes and me for my 50th Birthday while at home with my kids.
Thank you to all my friends and family members who sent me their wishes and thoughts via texts and calls for my birthday. Much appreciated.
I love you guys!
For those who may wonder, I did not open any bottles the night of my birthday. Just 2 glasses of a rose left in the fridge. Yet, nothing is lost, as there will be many other occasions to do this year, as most of my friends were born in 1973 like me, and we probably will celebrate our birthdays together.
Meanwhile, have a toast for my birthday, hoping that one of those days we will be able to do it together for real.
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