South West France, the hinterland between Bordeaux and Languedoc, is - oenologically - a vibrant, buzzy up-and-coming region that is busy reinventing itself.
Varied terroirs and indigenous grape varieties mean there is plenty to explore here, but a good place to start is with these two crisp picnic wines.
Both are well-made and modern with a southern ripeness cut through with a zesty freshness; they work equally as sippers or with picnic food - mozzarella and olive oil, quiche, cold cuts and cheese.
Esprit de Labastide, Gaillac, La Perle 2013 (£5.95, The Wine Society) - 50% Loin de l’œil, 30% Mauzac, 20% Sauvignon blanc
Golden sandy yellow, a touch of spritz, aromas of stone fruit and sweet spice; sweet ripe stone fruit, good freshness with zesty lime and green herbs.
Persistent, limey, mineral finish.
A great aperitif or match with light starters.
Domaine Chiroulet, Java rose, Cotes de Gascogne (Marc Fine Wines / Drinks of France / Deliciously French) 50% Merlot, 50% Cabernet Sauvignon
Juicy ripe red fruits, hints of fresh green herbs, flintsmoke, minerality, freshness and lime zest - persistent, minerally finish.
A perfect picnic wine.
Both wines provided for review.
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