Since their first Disque Bleu on the school French Exchange, most English people have a spot for France.
This often extends to French wines too. Some of the UK’s top wine writers and sommeliers chose their current French favourites recently.
Recommendations from the Absolutely Cracking Wines From France tasting included:
Crémant de Limoux, NV, £11.95, Berry Bros & Rudd. Less mainstream sparkling wine can offer fantastic value and high quality. Limoux is an underrated region in the Languedoc making refreshing wines from Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc and Mauzac. A versatile party or food fizz.
Chosen by Sunday Telegraph wine writer Susie Atkins.
Mas Belles Eaux, rosé, £7.95, From Vineyards Direct. A very pretty pink wine from this beautiful up and coming estate near Pézenas in the Languedoc. A light bodied, Syrah and Mourvedre blend with a fresh finish. Great value.
Domaine Pieretti, Coteaux de Cap Corse, 2011, £14.25, Yapp Brothers. Lean and elegant with personality and substance are the characteristics of good, dry rosés. Corsica may not be well known, but makes great pink wines from Grenache, Nielluccio and Alicante red grapes. Delicious.
Chosen by wine writer Natasha Hughes.
Tramontane, Macabeu, £8.22, Amathus. The Roussillon is now making excellent quality white wines due to investment from forward thinking producers such as the dynamic, young team at Tramontane. All their wines are really well made and stylish.
L’Atelier Miguel, Vermentino, £8.99, Waitrose. Vermentino aka Rolle is one of the successful white grapes in hot regions. Most famously from north Sardinia, it makes rich, full bodied wines often with a mineral and snappy, herbacous edge. A very versatile food wine.
Chosen by wine writer Tim Atkin MW.
Marc Colin, Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Cru, Vide-Bourse, 2010, £41.90 (bottle equivalent / case of 6 £502.80), Goedhuis. When you start to despair at the quality of some ‘fine wines’ sold in the UK, proper white Burgundy restores your faith and palate. Supremely elegant and complex.
Chosen by Independent wine writer Anthony Rose.
Domaine Jones, Fitou, 2011, £20.00, The House Wine. Katie Jones is one of the nicest and most innovative winemakers in the Languedoc-Roussillon area. Multi-award winning, fresh, modern white and red wines with cute labels are her hallmarks. See the website.
For more information, see French Wines with Style.
(photo – Lenoz / Flickr Creative Commons)