Best buys | Off the shelf: Domaine Grangette La Saignée de Rose Piquepoul Noir 2012

Best buys

Off the shelf: Domaine Grangette La Saignée de Rose Piquepoul Noir 2012

As I mentioned in my Guardian column this week I’m slightly disenchanted with the Languedoc’s signature grape variety Picpoul which isn’t nearly the good value it once was but Grangette’s is one I rather like.

Even better is their more unusual Piquepoul Noir which the manager of La Taverne du Port, a wine shop and restaurant in Marseillan, urged us to try. It manages to pull off what Sauvignon rosés rarely achieve - being crisp, fruity and dry. It tastes like a Picpoul but has the structure of a dry rosé. It was terrifically good with a scratch picnic-style lunch of charcuterie and tomato salad yesterday.

I haven’t got my copy of Jancis Robinson et al’s excellent Wine Grapes to hand but according to her website Piquepoul Noir is a rare variant of the better known Piquepoul Blanc which can also be found in small quantities in Spain where it goes under the name Picapoll Negre.

Needless to say, thanks to the Chancellor, it costs a good deal more back home than the 6€ we paid for it at La Taverne du Port* - you’ll pay £10.25 a bottle for it at the only UK stockist I could find, Carte du Vin, but that’s still not a bad price for an interesting rosé.

* a shop I can strongly recommend if you’re looking for interesting wines in the area. In addition to local wines they also have a good selection from Burgundy and the Rhone - and an informal restaurant/wine bar with an interesting and well-priced selection of wines by the glass.

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