My latest wine challenge was quite interesting and very timely (given we're in the middle of Chinese New Year!) - can Côtes du Rhône wines be paired with Chinese takeaway food?
I have to admit that I've not eaten Chinese takeaway food for years - after all, you can make a fabulous stir-fry at home, and Chinese ingredients are easily accessible in all supermarkets nowadays. I asked around on Twitter to see where I might find a good restaurant in my part of the woods and there were some good recommendations, but had to go to the closest one in the end due to never-ending poor weather. I cannot lie, I was a little disappointed - thank goodness for the wine!
I was sent two wines to try with the food, a red one - La Chasse Côtes Du Rhône Reserve (Sainsbury’s, £7.99) and a white - Saint Maurice Côtes du Rhône Villages Blanc de Rouville, Domaine de l'Echevin 2012 (The Wine Society, £12.50).
The Côtes Du Rhône wine area in southeast France has been producing wines for at least 2000 years, with the hot and sunny climate producing a more constant temperature than that of other French wine producing regions. Over 450 million bottles of wine are produced each year (14% of French wine production); with 80% red, 14% rosé and 6% white.
The La Chasse Côtes Du Rhône Reserve was a light, fruity, red, and matched the less sweet dishes. It perked up the prawn crackers and was a great accompaniment to the king prawn delight - a spicy Szechuan style dish. It's also a good wine to serve with mature cheeses as I discovered the next day!
The Saint Maurice Côtes du Rhône Villages was a very refreshing and zesty light white wine, excellent with all the Chinese dishes, but particularly the sweeter dishes of crispy shredded seaweed and sweet & sour chicken. A great all rounder of a wine!
There was nothing terribly wrong with the food, it felt like stepping in time by 20 years with exactly the same
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