Seniors Enjoy Dijon’s Mustard and Wine

Dijon, a city in eastern France, began as a Roman settlement called Divio and is located on the road from Paris to Lyon. With a population of just over 150,000, it’s big enough and small enough for senior travelers to take in on one full day visit.

I’ve been there a couple of times and found it to be an exciting place. Right in the heart of Burgundy, the surface of the vines is about 29,500 hectares for a production of about 200 million bottles sold.

As the ancient capital of the Burgundy province, Dijon is an architecturally rich city offering senior travelers far more than mustard. In its restored medieval core, you’ll discover one of France’s oldest museums, the Musée des Beaux-Arts, as well as the elegant Palace of the Dukes of Burgundy, that I remember best of all. Dijon has one of the best preserved medieval centers in France.

Dijon Mustard Yes, But the White Wines Reign

I recall many fields of yellow mustard as well as vineyards as far as the eye could see. It’s a great area for seniors travelers to spend one, two or three days for a great vacation. Lonely Planet notes that Dijon is one of France’s most appealing cities and I agree.

Filled with elegant medieval and Renaissance buildings, the lively historic center is a great place for strolling. Maybe take the self guided walk in the city, called Parcours de la chouette (the way of the owl, shown by easy to follow owl arrows and numbered owl plates in the ground).

I learned on one of my Food and Wine Tours of France as a Tour Group Leader with Elderhostel that La Bourgogne is better known for it’s white wines. 384 separate villages produce a white wine with the label ‘Bourgogne.’  I always figured it was the reds.

And for your information, the Côte de Nuits contains 24 out of the 25 red Grand Cru appellations in Burgundy, while all of the region’s white Grand Cru wines are in the Côte de Beaune. Even a Riesling lover like me will readily concede that the greatest white wines in the world are white Burgundies.

Seniors Will Like a “Kir”

Dijon is well known for cassis, a sweet black current liqueur that is a bright reddish-purple in color. I really like cassis and a traditional Dijonnaise cocktail is called a “Kir”, a blend of cassis and a local white wine (traditionally “Aligoté”) – you can also order it made with champagne for a tasty and festive “Kir Royale”. So what the heck, shoot the works  and have the Royale! A Kir makes for a great apéritif in late afternoon.

Seniors, jump the high speed TGV train from Paris to Dijon. It’s worth the trip just for the escargot in melted garlic butter, coq au vin, boeuf bourgignon and parslied ham, all washed down with a fine Burgundy, of course.

Enjoy your stay in Dijon. jeb

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