Match of the week
Sponsored feature: 10 ways to enjoy your favourite Provence rosé this Christmas
Rosé at Christmas! Well, why on earth not? We enjoy white wine year round and reds in the summer so why not enjoy what has become one of the most popular styles of rosé at this joyful time of year?
Provence rosé has been booming in last few years, accounting for just under 40% of France’s AOP (Appellation d'Origine Protégée) rosés with 165 million bottles produced in 2014. As you may know it’s made mainly from red wine grapes (the local Cinsault, Tibouren, Mourvèdre, Syrah and Grenache). Although most wines from the region share the characteristic freshness and delicate pale colour of the Provence style, there’s a range of options from Provence.Crisp and fruity rosés from a recent vintage are perfect for seafood and salads, richer, weightier rosés from older vintages can handle richer dishes and even roast meats.
Here are some of the ways you can enjoy them best over the holiday period:
With smoked salmon
It’s not only the taste - the acidity of a fresh crisp rosé cuts through the oiliness of the fish and complements its delicate, smoky flavour - but the look. Pale pink fish with a pretty pale pink wine just looks gorgeous. (You can obviously pair it with poached or seared salmon too.)
With seafood starters and canapés
The French like to indulge in a classic plateau de fruits de mer (raw seafood platter) over Christmas and Provence rosé is the ideal accompaniment. Even if you don’t share that tradition do try it with prawns, fresh crab or a seafood tartare
With grilled fish
If you’re serving grilled or roast fish on Christmas Eve, as many do, a fuller-bodied style of Provence rosé makes a perfect match. It’s a good centrepiece for a New Year’s Eve dinner party too
From starter salads to Boxing Day (or New Year’s Day) buffets Provence rosé’s versatility really comes into play with crunchy raw vegetables and zingy dressings
With roast turkey
It might seem unlikely but there are more full-bodied styles of rosé that work really well with roast meats for those who find red wines a touch heavy. Look out for some of the fancier Provence rosés in beautiful bottle shapes or buy a magnum to put on the table.
With the turkey leftovers
This is where Provence rosés come into their own: Boxing Day leftovers, turkey sandwiches (rosé’s great with cranberry sauce), spicy Asian-style salads and mild curries like turkey korma can all benefit from the touch of freshness that a Provence rosé brings
With vegetarian main courses
Many of us need to cater for vegetarian friends and family members and Provence rosés pair particularly well with a festive veggie pie or roast, especially if it includes Mediterranean vegetables. They’re great with middle-eastern flavours too.
With a cheeseboard (or a late night fridge-raid)
A refreshing rosé is sometimes just what you need after a rich meal so don’t feel you have to pass the port with the stilton. And keep a bottle of Provence rosé in the fridge for those late night fridge raids. It’s particularly good with goats cheeses and brie.
With fresh fruit
There’s usually loads of fresh fruit around at Christmas so sip a glass with your clementines or fresh fruit salad. Rosé is perfect with fresh berries too.
With a sofa, a blanket and your favourite boxed set
Come on, the cook needs a break! Let your family do the washing-up while you put your feet up with a glass and relax ….
Photograph © CIVP/F.Millo
If you found this post useful and were happy to get the advice for free perhaps you'd think about donating towards the running costs of the site? You can find out how to do it here or to subscribe to our regular newsletter click here.