75cl * 13% ABV * Languedoc, France
Rather than recommending Provence for quality rosé, these days we seem to be leaning more towards the wines of the Languedoc - in both terms of price and, in many instances, flavour, they stand up just as well. Bottled with a glass stopper and in probably the most elegant, frosted bottle we've seen on the market, this from Château Puech-Haut looks and feels the part: in the glass it hints at soft summer berries and stone fruit, but there's an underlying fullness there too. Classy.
And it's not just us at Taurus who are fans. Jancis Robinson remarked at the high quality for the price and recently wrote in the FT: "This elegant, understated wine has been made with a great deal of thoughtfulness and will pair beautifully with delicate dishes - grapefruit and scallop ceviche; grilled prawns drizzled with yuzu; crab and fennel salad; or even just a light pasta in a fresh tomato sauce with the odd basil leaf".
There's another facet to this wine's story - for us at least. Taurus Wines' owners, Rupert and Fliss, were holidaying in France a few years ago and spotted the frosted Argali bottle in a high-end Parisian farm shop. Buying a bottle for the journey south, they then travelled down to Avignon where they once again met the wine, this time at a family-run restaurant in Villeneuve-les-Avignon. With the party swinging and the family much refreshed on the crisp, fresh rosé, they decided to make contact with the producer on their return to the UK. At that time, there was only one other UK importer, so Taurus went direct and hence the beautiful frosted Argali bottles arrived in Surrey - and they've been a big hit ever since!