Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Joanna Simon in The Sunday Times, September 28, 2008: Real Men Drink Pink

If anyone still thinks rosé is only for the girls, think again. Real men not only drink pink, they’re getting into bed with it (loosely speaking). The new recreation of retiring sports stars, especially those with French blood, is to produce their own rosé.

David Ginola, former Newcastle United footballer, has launched Coste Brulade, a rosé from his native Provence. It’s not yet on the shelves in the UK but, unless it’s a silly price (curiously, nobody would even give me a guide-price), a supermarket seems sure to snap it up. The 2007, which won a silver medal in this year’s International Wine Challenge, is the prettiest of pale pinks with lovely, fresh, strawberry-scented fruit.

Another example is French Flair, a rosé from Fronton, north of Toulouse, which bears the signature and picture of recently retired French rugby international Thomas Castaignède. So far, it only seems to be on sale in France, but with Castaignède a familiar face on British television it may only be a matter of time before it comes here.

While we’re waiting, the drinks below should satisfy any male still wary of being seen drinking pink.

Stinger Organic Ale, £1.89-£1.99, 500ml
Developed with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and brewed with organic nettles. Fresh, soft with a hint of gingery spice; delicious (selected Budgen; Thresher;

2007 Monty’s French Red, £7.99
Meaty, herby, berry-flavoured red, biodynamically grown by wine writer turned vigneron and TV star Monty Waldin (Adnams, 01502 727222).

2005 Steak House Cabernet Sauvignon, £6.49
Butch-looking, but elegant, savoury, blueberry-flavoured Washington State red (on offer at the Co-op; reverts to £7.99 on October 5).