Fans of fine French wines will enjoy Le Petit Ballon, a monthly subscription box where all of the wines are selected by the famed sommelier Jean-Michel Deluc (who has previously worked as the head sommelier at the Ritz Hotel in London).
Packaged in a sturdy, shockproof cardboard box, the wines are sent with a copy of The Gazette, Le Petit Ballon‘s monthly magazine which is packed full of cultural, food and drink features, as well as the Tasting Notes which have been prepared by Jean-Michel.
But first, there is a little extra surprise in June’s box!
Le Petit Ballon has done a lovely special collaboration with their friends at Michel et Augustin, to include a bar of their popular cookie squares for every subscriber. This bar features a deliciously soft centre of milk chocolate and melted caramel, on a sweet cookie base – yum!
Moving onto the wines, I was very pleased to see a bottle of rosé, alongside a bottle of red as part of Le Petit Ballon‘s Grapes and Expectations subscription package.
Domaine Pélaquié Grand Vernet 2016 AOP Côtes du Rhône Villages Laudun (14.5%)
Starting with the red, this wine is one of the highest scoring vintages by Jean-Michel and it comes presented in a beautiful bottle. Made by The Pélaquié family who has been growing vines in the Vallée du Rhône since the 16th century, their wines are now renowned and appreciated across the world, so it was a real pleasure to try it out.
Created by blending Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre grapes together, this red has a stunning deep ruby colour in the glass with fresh and youthful purple highlights. The aroma is also fresh and fruity, whilst on the palate, it boasts quite a complex flavour with notes of Blackberries, Sweet Spices, Liquorice and Chocolate. A lovely decadent red to enjoy with your favourite Barbeque dishes and vegetable sides such as stuffed courgettes.
Sainte Béatrice Baletti 2017 AOP Côtes de Provence (13%)
Whilst we enjoy rosé wines all year round in the UK, over on the mainland they are definitely more of a seasonal Summer drink, and I absolutely loved this one! Domaine Beatrice was born when former restaurateur Jean Novaretti decided to start a new life as a winemaker. Later, Valerie Rouselle (who already owned Chateau Roubine) purchased the chateau. The wines are ambitious, elegant and aromatic, which echo the beauty of the property. Even better? The estate is also home to an eco-museum dedicated to the land and the vines – I would love to visit this!
This rosé features a triple blend of grapes; Cinsault, Grenache, Syrah, which gives it a wonderful pale raspberry pink colour. On the nose, it has a fine and delicate aroma, whilst taste-wise, it’s bursting full of flavour with notes of Freesia, Rose, Raspberry, Gooseberry and Strawberry coming through the strongest, and ending on a somewhat Liquorice flavour. A wine like this pairs well with a vast range of dishes and would perfectly suit family dinners, barbeques and picnics alike. The ideal Summer rosé!