Match of the week | Provençal-style fish soup and Picpoul de Pinet

Match of the week

Provençal-style fish soup and Picpoul de Pinet

We’re down in the Languedoc for a few days and ended up at one of our favourite fish restaurant Le Glacier at Marseillan.

It’s not that the cooking is amazing but the local oysters are the best I’ve eaten, the portions are generous and the prices - 25€ for the basic set menu - more than reasonable.

It’s been so incredibly cold down here I decided to go for the fish soup which came in a huge steaming tureen along with croutons, rouille (a spicy garlicky mayonnaise-type sauce) and grated cheese. I could have made a meal of that alone.

We were drinking - as we always seem to end up doing down here - the local Picpoul de Pinet, a versatile crisp dry white that seems to go with everything you throw at it. And it was perfect - the right wine for the place and the occasion.

Dark savoury French fish soups like this can take slightly stronger earthier whites and even dry rosés but what you don’t want is a wine that’s too oaky or too fruity so I’d steer clear of wines such as rich chardonnays and New Zealand-style Sauvignon Blancs.


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