When All Subscription Boxes asked me to review the wine subscription box ‘Le Petit Ballon’, I was excited of course, but – more honestly I was daunted; sure, I love a glass of wine and I’d like to think I have developed the notion that I am somewhat capable of selecting a decent bottle of plonk to compliment my meal – yet, would I have the ability to write a review on the subject?!
I was surprised when the box arrived; it has been marketed to people like me, the wine novice; the one who likes to try different wines – yet, the one who’s unfamiliar to wine terminology. They knew, they sent me the ‘Apprentice Box’, I’m impressed!
Le Petit Ballon subscription box comes well packaged with 2 bottles every month. On this occasion, I received a bottle of red and a bottle of white. Along with the wine itself I also received tasting notes that contained information on each wine, for example: How long to let the wine breathe as well as the perfect temperature to serve; The note cards also suggest times when these wines could be best enjoyed. This is a fantastic accompaniment to the wine box as it enables the subscriber to learn and develop their knowledge of the wine and where it’s from whilst they’re drinking it.
All wines that feature in Le Petit Ballon’s boxes have been carefully selected by Jean-Michel Deluc, a master sommelier, formerly of the Ritz, London.
Furthermore, I also received the monthly Le Petit Ballon ‘The Gazette’ Magazine. Issue 1 includes 24 pages that cover various articles about Le Petit Ballon, information on your subscription and how it works and a cheat sheet, that helps you to select a wine (from Le Petit Ballon) based on labels in a colour coded system. Needless to say, the magazine is packed full of information.
SAUVIGNON BLANC – Complices de Loire – Cinq Terroirs – 2014 (12.5%)
A beautiful crisp white wine from the heart of France in the Loire Valley. The note cards describe the wine as ‘Deliciously fruity and light with tangy, citric and very fresh aromas’. This wine is suggested as the perfect complement to Fish, cheese as well as Japanese food.
The tasting notes are as follows:
Eyes: A pale yellow with green hue and a crystalline brilliance which suggests a freshness on the palette.
Nose: The nose s a fragrant and aromatic with notes of white fruits, citrus, white flowers, mint and lemon balm.
Mouth: Round and unctuous in the mouth; this wine is refreshing and lively with all the beautiful aromas revisited as flavours on the palate.
Pinotage Merlot – Marianne Wine Estate -Natana Cuvée Rouge – 2013 (13%)
A bold, formidable red from the Stellenbosch region of South Africa. This full bodied red is full of the freshness, yet sweetness of the juicy black fruits. The note card suggests this wine be paired with: Seared duck with cassis, salmon steak in red wine sauce, or perhaps some camembert or brie cheese.
The tasting notes are as follows:
Eye: The wine is young, concentrated and purple with a crystalline sheen.
Nose: On the nose, the aromas are mainly dominated by aromas of ripe black fruit, red flowers, peppermint and licorice.
Mouth: On the palate the wine is juicy and meaty both with black fruit flavours and a sensation of sweetness and great finesse.
Every month you’ll receive the following in your Le Petit Ballon box:
Two bottles of wine carefully selected Former Sommelier Chef at The Ritz.
Tasting advice and super tips With handy posts and videos.
The Gazette The magazine that tells you everything there is to know about wine without all the waffle!
There are 2 subscription options available to you:
- Grape Expectations – £24.90 per month, Including Shipping. This subscription brings you unknown, but great value wines chosen by the master sommelier Jean-Michel Deluc.
- Age of Raisin – £39.90 per month, Including Shipping. This subscription delivers prestigious labels for connoisseurs, chosen by the master sommelier Jean-Michel Deluc.
By subscribing you’ll also receive 20% off future wine purchases on their site, all delivered straight to your door.