It was time to leave Switzerland, and I was dragging my feet. On our way to Beaune, we stopped at a French mall for lunch. It was the strangest thing to go from the majestic Swiss Alps to a French suburban mall. For the same price as my lunch entrée yesterday, we got 2 meals with drinks and dessert. We arrived in Beaune, the wine capital of Burgundy. The hotel was spread out with classic country decor. The woman who ran the hotel showed us to our room. We went past the wine cellar and she joked that our room was down the stairs. At least their would be wine.

Hôtel-Dieu de Beaune

We went off to see the Hôtel Dieu de Beaune (Hospices de Beaune). The chancellor, Nicholas Rolin, founded this hospital for the poor in 1443. It had a large wing for the poor and a small wing for the wealthy patrons.

The Last Judgment by Rogier van Der Weyden, 1445-50

This alter piece was painted by a dutch painter, Van der Weyden. The painting had such marvelous detail. There was something there I had never seen before. A large moving magnifying glass moved over the painting so you could study the detail.

Wine tasting

Our Happy Hostess & Stephanie

After touring the hospice we wandered a bit to check out all the wine shops. We went back to the hotel for the wine tasting in their cellar. The woman who showed us to our room was hosting the wine tasting, and she described some of the history of the region and the proper way to taste wine. We sampled 2 Chardonnays and 3 Pinot Noirs. My favorite was a cordial mixed with the Pinot Noir.


A tool native to the region, the tastevin allows one to sample wine and check the clarity and color in dimly lit wine cellars.

And to our final destination, the city of light: