Loire wines, being northerly, light and refreshing, are perfect for warmer weather. However, I was challenged to match a couple of bottles from Bougrier to some Christmas food.
Muscadet's classic food match is shellfish and Breton oysters, whilst rosé d'Anjou's sweet red fruits and fresh acidity make it a perfect picnic wine, so this would be no easy task.
Eschewing the soft option of Boxing Day cold cuts and / or a Christmas breakfast of smoked salmon with scrambled eggs, I asked Estefania Led Ramos of Cambridge-based ¡Que rico! Tapas to help me select something suitable.
Estefania set up her at-home catering business a couple of years ago and I was very impressed with her food when we tried a six course tapas meal last December; the two Loire wines here share with sherry (the traditional match for tapas) a fresh acidity, but are lighter-bodied so need slightly less substantial food.
Muscadet Sevre et Maine sur Lie 2013, la Famille Bougrier (£7.50, Oddbins)
Lemony and fresh with a bit of mineral thrill and some savoury leesiness, this is a lovely aperitif wine that also matches with the vegetable and seafood-based tapas here.
Clams in Green Sauce
Rosé d’Anjou 2013, la Famille Bougrier (£8, Oddbins)
The simple principle here was to match the red-berry flavours of the wine to pink-ish food, hence roasted red bell peppers stuffed with mushrooms and cream followed by duck with pomegranate sauce.
Duck in Pomegranate Sauce
Christmas is traditionally a time of eating, drinking and socialising. But there's only so many roast dinners that you want to cook for large numbers of guests - far better is to give yourself a break and arrange for Estefania to provide the catering for an evening whilst you catch up with friends.
Wines provided for review.
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