Wines of Provence

Provence is a region in southeastern France bordering Italy and the Mediterranean Sea, known for its diverse landscapes, from the Southern Alps and Camargue plains to fine sandy beaches full of vineyards, olive groves, pine forests and lavender fields.

For me, there’s nothing better than taking a summer picnic out to my favourite London park and sipping on a glass of Vins de Provence Rosé whilst enjoying the view – and the sunshine! The combination of pale pink, summer fruits, picnic food and great friends are a match truly made in heaven. 

The late summer sun is a great excuse to lay down a rug on the grass, close your eyes and dream of Provence…

As many of you will know, Provence is known for its diverse landscapes and beautiful scenery. These range from the cool Southern Alps to fine sandy beaches and far-reaching swathes of vineyards, olive groves, pine forests and lavender fields. Provence wines come from three appellations Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence, Coteaux Varois en Provence and the biggest, Côtes de Provence, each has its own characteristics.

Provence’s sunshine and high temperatures, tempered by the cooling Mistral winds make it ideal for making wine, so much so that wine has been made there for over 2600 years. Today, Provence is widely considered to be the home of rosé: indeed, 90% of the 164 million bottles of wine produced last year in Provence was rosé and in 2018, a staggering 7.2 million bottles of those were enjoyed by us in the UK!

Vins de Provence Rosé is also a fabulous option for a dinner party – not only does it look great on the table with its typical beautifully pale salmon pink hues ranging from Peach, Melon, Mango, Pomelo, Mandarin to Redcurrant – it is also a wonderful pairing with delicately spicy Asian foods….. 

Vins de Provence Rosé gets its colour from the skin of black grapes that contains the pigment, whilst the pulp which produces the grape juice is colourless. The colour of a rosé wine therefore depends on how long the skin and the juice are in contact and the temperature: this is known as the maceration process. Other important factors in creating these sublime dry rosés are the grape varietals used and the terroir, which also has a great impact on the colour and personality of the wine. 

The Cinsault grape for example, adds a fresh, delicate, fruity touch to wines, nuancing the power of each varietal in the blend.  Flavours are varied and range from citrus, exotic fruit, berries but most importantly they are all dry wines.  

What I really like about Vins de Provence Rosé is that it’s less formal than white or red wines, so it’s ideal for all sorts of occasions, whether it’s dinner with friends or a summer picnic – you could even serve it a wedding reception and capture that relaxed but stylish Provence vibe! And because it’s so versatile and inherently sophisticated and stylish, you don’t need to worry too much about how it will work with specific foods – though I will say that it is a great match for fish and seafood, fragrant curries and vegetarian dishes. and of course, they are a match made in heaven for a sunny afternoon on the heath! Santé!

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