Country of the Month: France - Old Bridge Cellars

Country of the Month: France

Apr 11, 2023Meg David

After a little hiatus, we're back with our Country of the Month series! After unpacking the Italian Whites with great success, this month we'll be looking at French wine in all its glory.

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, we'll be hosting a Country of the Month tasting at Old Bridge Cellars Como this Thursday 13th and North Fremantle this Friday 14thbetween 4pm - 7pm. We hope you can join us! 

Now, a history lesson...France has been known for its wine for centuries. The history of wine in France can be traced back to the Roman era, when the grape cultivation was first introduced to the region. Since then, wine has played an important role in the cultural, social and economic development of France and has become one of the country's most iconic symbols.

As we moved from the very early years where wine was primarily produced by monks and was used for religious purposes, to the middle ages where wine production in France began to shift from monasteries to commercial vineyards, wine became an important commodity, and many towns and villages began to specialise in its production.

As the years went on, the discovery of new grape varieties and winemaking techniques led to the production of higher-quality wines and wine trade also expanded, making France one of the world's leading wine exporters at the time (and still today). 

Today, France is home to some of the world's most famous wine regions, including Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, and the Rhône Valley. French wines are renowned for their complexity, depth and elegance, and are highly prized by wine enthusiasts around the world.

Here at Old Bridge Cellars we are HUGE fans of French wine, so we've pulled together the ultimate starter pack. Jay has given some very specific drinking conditions and food pairings for each wine in case you needed some assistance. This Country of the Monthwine pack includes:

Domaine Reine Juliette Picpoul de Pinet 2021: Hailing from the Mediterranean, the cool maritime climate provides the perfect growing conditions for this relatively unknown grape variety, Picpoul. Dry and crisp, grassy, herbal, and with a mineral edge. Enjoy on the back of the boat at Rotto, wearing linen pants and shucking oysters while you watch the sun set...the ideal setting for this wine. 

Christian Salmon Sancerre 2021: For six generations the Salmon family has been growing Sauvignon Blanc grapes in the beautiful wine region of Sancerre making benchmark wines with care, finesse and passion. The wines are in a classic, fresh and zesty style and very different to the Australian and New Zealand savvy’s to which we’ve become accustomed. This wine is flinty and balanced with delicate fruity pear nuances. It cries out for charred prawns or high quality Comte.

Marc Bredif Vouvray Classic 2021: This wine is produced by one of the most highly respected Vouvray producers and is an absolute icon among Loire wineries. They produce a ripe and textural style of Chenin Blanc that contains a remarkable ‘Chameleon’ acidity that makes them incredibly age worthy as well as approachable young. Bursting with complex notes of flowers, quince, lanolin, apples and citrus plus refreshing acidity, this wine pairs perfectly with any type of seafood but live dangerously and try with sushi. 

Rameau d’Or Cotes de Provence Rosé 2021: Produced in the heartland of dry Rosé, Provence, and crafted from the classic Syrah, Grenache and Cinsault, this delightful wine has depth of flavour, richness, harmony and persistence. Bursting with delicate aromas of wild strawberries and rose petals, the palate presents soft berry fruits and a creamy texture that is immediately appealing. It is perfect for apéritif drinking but is also a wine that can stand up to creamy risotto and pasta dishes.

Joseph Faiveley Bourgogne Rouge Pinot Noir 2020: This entry-level Burgundy has fruit sourced from the Côte Chalonnaise all the way to the Côte de Nuits vineyards, which date back to the Gallo-Roman era. The wine is partly aged in vats and partly in French oak barrels for 12-14 months to maintain the perfect balance between freshness and complexity. Exuding fresh, red-fruit aromas on the nose and balanced with typical savouriness on the palate, it has rich and very ripe substance, with fine round tannins. It screams deli meats and fire roasted proteins. Be sure to get the decanter out for this one.

Chateau Beausejour Fronsac 2019: Value, quality and Bordeaux are words seldom seen together. The same family has owned Château Beausejour in Fronsac for five generations. A 85% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc blend from the superb 2019 vintage. Ripe blackcurrant aromas with some liquorice, mulberry, cedary tobacco and spicy dried herb notes allude to the richness, charm and refinement on the palate. The Merlot dominant flavours favour leaner duck and pork dishes, but a fillet mignon wouldn’t be half bad either!

From its humble beginnings in ancient times to its current status as a global icon, French wine has played an important role in the country's cultural and economic development, and plays a very important role on our shop floor.

Be sure to join us at this week's tasting or grab yourself a pack online to enjoy at home!! 


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