NV Le Grand Courtage, Grande Cuvee Brut Rosé, France
Wine of the Week with Annette Tomei
Certain places, situations, and especially foods, trigger cravings for very particular accompaniments. For me, there are many occasions when only pink bubbles will do. In this case, it was sunset at sea, off the coast of Mazatlán.
Traditional Brut Rosé is usually a blend of the traditional Champagne grapes–Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier–with color coming from skin contact with the Pinots. However, there are others that step outside the boundaries of tradition. This wine is one of them.
Grand Courtage Brut Rosé is a blend of Chardonnay, Ugni Blanc and Gamay. Chardonnay provides a traditional backbone to the blend. Ugni Blanc may be better known as the grape that becomes Cognac, or as its Italian alias, Trebbiano. It lends a bright, fresh acidity to the blend. Gamay, the grape of Beaujolais, of course adds the color, but also the layers of fruit and floral aromas that make this bottle of pink bubbles a special treat.
About this wine
The color of this wine blended seamlessly into the sunset… pale salmon with a peachy glow. My glass held a single effervescent geyser gently bursting onto the surface of the wine, then over my tongue in a sheer lace of tiny pink bubbles. The designation as brut indicates dryness. For a dry style, this wine is fruitier than expected (thank you Gamay). Aromas of fresh raspberries continue on the palate. A juicy burst of cranberry and tangerine finished with notes of lilac and rose, and a mid-note that reminded me of sake.
Perfect on its own as an aperitif, but also a great accompaniment for sushi or the flavors of Southeast Asia. The perception of sweetness provides balance for a bit of spicy heat. This wine is so light bodied and refreshing, stick with light bodied yet flavorful foods that won’t overwhelm the fresh character
Of course, my all-time favorite pairing with pink bubbles is French fries with Béarnaise sauce. This wine may be a little fruity for this pairing, but skip the Béarnaise and go with good old-fashioned ketchup (maybe spiked with a little sriracha), and you’ll be fine!
So, to be clear, this is not fine Champagne. This is a delicious, refreshing, and well-priced celebration of sunsets and tasty nibbles with friends. These pink bubbles are poised to become my go-to for just such occasions. At under $20, I recommend you bring it along to your next sunset!
Want to celebrate with this pink bubbly? Search where it’s available near you.
And if bubbly is your thing, you might want to check out these sparkling wine recommendations.
FREE APHRODISIAC NEWSLETTER
Subscribe to our free aphrodisiac newsletter