Monestier in October

The view from Four a Chaux at sunrise

We just spent a great week in France visiting family. I had never been in the autumn but it was a lovely time to be there with the season reflected in the market produce (lots of mushrooms!) and the harvesting of the grapes.

The market at Issigeac



We visited the nearby towns and villages of Bergerac, Saussignac, Issigeac, and La Bastide and went on long walks with a white goldendoodle always intent on getting as dirty as possible… It was also the season for sloe berries so we collected over three kilos while out on a walk in order to make copious amounts of sloe gin for Christmas.

Sloe Gin Recipe:

450g sloe berries (freeze first which allows the skins to break)

200g sugar (more to be added later if neccesary)

700 ml gin

Combine in jars or bottles. Turn every day for the first two weeks and then once a week. Ready to strain berries and drink in two months – will continue to keep for a few years.

The churches at La Bastide (left) and Saussignac (right).