La Pêche de Vigne
Vignerons in the Coteaux du Lyonnais region at one time planted a peach pit at the end of each row of grapes. The baby peach plant, delicate and capricious, prey to the whims of whatever was floating in the wind, would be the canary in the wine maker's coal mine - it was the plant that would show signs of any sickness or infestation long before the heartier grape vines would be in distress. La pêche de vigne comes from these peach plants, and is local only to the Lyonnais region. This kind of peach is identified by the deep red color of its flesh and skin and the fruit's thick beige fuzz. Today the fruit is produced in orchards, and through the selective process, fruit growers of the Rhone Valley have come to offer larger fruits than were originally found on the trees among the vines. If you visit the vignerons in the Coteaux du Lyonnais, be sure to keep an eye out for the peach trees found on the grounds of the old estates. The fruit that these particular trees bear is no doubt La Pêche de Vigne, and are the product of several hundred years of local history.
Eating the fruit pictured here, I noticed that there is a whisper of spice in the flavor. A little bit like cinnamon. It could acutally be coming from the odor of the skin, as I cut a wedge and bite it off. I don't think that anyone would notice it unless they were really meditating over the fruit the way I was today, but the little whisper of cinnamon has awakened other little voices that urge me to cook with la pêche de vigne. Loic thinks it is a horrible waste to eat peaches in any form but fresh. I know I can change his mind. What should I prepare for him? My culture features so many home baked desserts featuring peaches. Which will be the definitive one - to win him over?