Berry Bros & Rudd Reserve Red
Only a merchant with a pedigree like Berry Bros & Rudd could consider an £8.45 bottle a ‘house wine’ but if your usual fare is classed growth claret I guess it is.
And they’ve managed to come up with three very appealing wines in their new ‘Reserve’ range. The wines come from their existing supplier, Jean-Luc Terrier who is based in the Limoux area of the Languedoc.
I particularly like the deliciously warm, juicy Rhone-ish red which is based on Merlot with a dash of Syrah and Grenache (the Syrah particularly comes through). It’s hard to think of a type of food with which it wouldn’t appeal but it would be especially good with roasts, grills, pies, sausages and robust pasta dishes.
The Reserve White, a blessed relief from pure Sauvignon, is based on the excellent chardonnay of the Limoux region given an intriguingly musky spin with some Sauvignon Blanc, Mauzac and Vermentino. I immediately thought 'fish pie' when I tasted it.
And the pale, salmon pink Reserve Rosé, mainly Cinsault and Syrah with a smattering of Grenache and Mourvèdre is refreshingly dry with far more 'bite' than the typical Provencal rosé. The ideal wine to drink with seared salmon or tuna.
I also approve of the 13% ABV of all the wines - enough to give them character without being over-alcoholic.
These are reliable, crowd-pleasing but far from bland wines that really show off what the Languedoc has to offer. Given that BBR has the royal warrant I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the Queen didn’t have some in her cellar.
* Although all the wines, as I’ve mentioned, are £8.45 you pay only £7.60 if you buy an unsplit case of 12. Which is a bit of no-brainer.
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