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First Of The Summer Wine…

Rich the Graped Crusader is back for his third column. We’ve managed to drag him out of the Selfridges wine department, and this time he has been reviewing the wonderful wine range at Café Rouge. With Summer in full swing what better time is there to plonk yourself outside Café Rouge to sample not only their excellent food, but also their varied and classy wine selection? I’ve sampled some of the best wines that Café Rouge has to offer and am confident that there’s something here for everyone. Their range is, as you would expect, a great representation of some of the best wine styles that France has to offer. With the heavy influx of New World wines into the country it’s easy to forget the huge influence which France has played on the world of wine. Therefore why not go back to basics and try one of the wines listed below?

Pinot Gris d’Alsace AC (Turckheim) £17.75
Whilst this wine retains some of the classic Pinot Grigio characteristics which some of you may be used to, it has slightly more body and a softer peachy character. A very smooth and refined wine which is tailor made for the Summer.

Chablis AC (Domaine de Vauroux) £20.25
A wonderful wine from a very reliable producer. This wine has all the hallmarks of a classic Chablis with steely and mineral qualities and a medium bodied palate with hints of citrus. A very classy example of what the Chardonnay grape can achieve in the right hands!

Sancerre AC (Domaine Hubert Brochard) £25.15
Sauvignon Blanc has really captured our imagination in this country, largely thanks to the textbook New Zealand examples we’ve come to know and love. It’s easy to forget that France has been churning out fantastic Sauvignon Blanc for ages. This is a great French example, with amazing citrus flavours and a full round body resulting in a really refreshing wine.  Summer in a bottle.

Fleurie AC (André Colonge) £21.15
In my opinion this is a really good summer red wine. Made predominantly from the Gamay grape it’s fairly light in body but packed full of cherry flavours which show just why Beaujolais is such a popular wine. These feel like very small bottles!

Pinot Noir, Domaine de Valmoissine (Louis Latour) £19.10
Pinot Noir is well known as being one of the most difficult grapes to grow but which is capable of incredibly high quality red wines. Louis Latour are a very successful Burgundian wine maker and this Pinot Noir shows just why. Another light to medium bodied red which is perfect for the Summer with amazing red berry flavours and hints of plum. Very smooth and very easy drinking.

Royal Rouge, Sparkling Red £19.25
I imagine that very few of you have sampled a sparking red but it’s really not as unusual as it might seem. I’ve been a fan of Australian sparking Shiraz for some time now and this French effort shows the same element of fun and originality. A really gorgeous wine with hints of berries and spices. If you’re looking to try something a little different this is the wine for you!

I’d love to know what you think of the wines above so please leave any feedback or questions below. I’ll also be hosting a wine tasting lunch at Café Rouge, Bullring in the near future so watch this space for further information.

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