Pascal Janvier Sarl Coteaux du Loir "Cuvée du Rosier"


One of the Loire’s rarest red grapes, Pineau d’Aunis is downright obscure compared to the region’s golden child, Cabernet Franc. As with many of France’s grape varieties, Pineau d’Aunis was nearly wiped out by phylloxera in the 1860s. A notoriously finicky grape, it was widely replaced with easier-to-grow, higher-yielding varieties. Pineau d’Aunis acreage had been in steady decline until around twenty years ago when local vignerons, fearing its impending extinction, began an effort to put the indigenous variety back on the map. Only about a thousand acres are planted to Pineau d’Aunis in France today. In the Coteaux du Loir appellation, Pascal Janvier dutifully tends his vines to craft a 100% Pineau d’Aunis cuvée—the only bottling of this extraordinary grape in our entire portfolio. 
     In the glass, his Cuvée du Rosier looks (and often drinks) like young Pinot Noir. Its bright strawberry and sour cherry notes lead into a spicy finish recalling cracked pepper. Juicy and lively thanks to a palate-tickling hint of effervescence, it is best served slightly chilled, as you would a Beaujolais, and can be paired with anything (or nothing at all), but goes especially well with tricky-to-pair dishes that have a kick. This wine is truly a knockout with spicy food, and the KLWM staff delights in swapping stories of matchmaking it with the plethora of worldly takeout options we have in and around Berkeley. The compilation of Janvier’s rouge with hand-pulled sesame paste noodles from Oakland’s Shan Dong restaurant is one of my all-time greatest hits. From zesty curries to kimchi bibimbap, a chilled glass of this hidden gem cuvée will refresh a sizzling palate like a cooling elixir, while at the same time enhancing all the flavors at table.

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