Under-priced and under-estimated
Blanquette De Limoux Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée is great value for money. Yes, it’s certainly more expensive here than in France but far less pricey than its celebrated cousin, Champagne.
In 1531, the Benedictine monks from the Abbey of SaintHilaire in the region of Languedoc-Roussillon in the south-west of France discovered the secret of making sparkling wine. Till then the monks had been producing a still wine made with Mauzac, the local grape variety. A fine white down can often be found on the leaves and that is called ‘Blanquette’ in the local dialect. So by enabling a second fermentation in bottle (that’s the Champagne Method) Blanquette de Limoux was born. The area has been making this since 1531, and it is thought to be the oldest sparkling wine in the world!
Those lucky French!
The Limoux Vineyard, which covers 2000 hectares, has a unique microclimate; it’s located in the South of France in the Pyrenean foothills 20 km from Carcassonne and its famous medieval castle (which, by the way, is said to have inspired Walt Disney’s Magic Castle). Until recently Blanquette De Limoux has mostly been for home consumption – those lucky French. Now we can buy a bottle or two without the need for a cross-Channel trip!
Tesco Finest 1531 Blanquette De Limoux makes a delicious alternative to the more ubiquitous but often less consistent Prosecco. It’s well worth a try and it’s unlikely one would be disappointed. It makes the perfect aperitif, and pairs well with light foods, white meats, salads and seafood.
Nose: apples, a hint of toast
Palate: stone fruit, tart apples
Finish: medium, crisp and refreshing