The Easter weekend is nearly upon us, and while it might not involve quite the festivities that Christmas does, it’s still a weekend with much of the focus around the dining table with the family.
Hopefully the weather has changed as well.
Spring lamb is a traditional Easter dish but with a bit of luck and some sunshine there
may be spring vegetables, salads and maybe even a very early barbecue.
There is of course chocolate as well but that’s worth a whole column in itself, which will follow on next week.
Wishful thinking maybe but how about some rosé to start, it may just whet the palate for the delights of the summer rosés ahead?
La Petite Laurette du Midi Rosé 2017, Pays d’Oc (Co-op £7.99) comes in one of those skittle-like bottles that are used in the slightly more fashionable, next door region of Provence. And while this isn’t quite up there it's certainly very appealing and tremendous
It’s a very pretty pale pink with red fruits and a touch of spice, the palate is
very fresh with soft red fruits and crisp acidity before a refreshing but dry finish.
If the sun is shining this is one for the garden, or serve with some garlic prawns.
Louis Latour is one of the most recognisable names in Burgundy and their white wines
from the southerly Mâconnais are always reliable.
Macon-Lugny 2015, Louis Latour (Majestic £12.99 but £10.99 if part of a mix six) is one of those go-to wines, that even after recent wine price increases continues to offer good value.
Lugny is one of the villages that makes up this very pretty region and this is 100 per cent chardonnay made without the use of any oak.
There are crisp apples, citrus, peach and a little honey on the bouquet followed by a nicely layered palate with more citrus fruit and some nuttiness followed by a fresh, clean finish.
This would work with smoked salmon or simply grilled fish but also has enough depth to work with roast chicken or even roast pork.
Lamb will certainly be the entrée piece on my Easter Sunday lunch table and Sant’antimo Rosso 2015, Toscana (Majestic £14.99 but £9.99 as part of a mix six) would work very nicely.
Part of the Majestic Parcel Series this is a blend of the local sangiovese with some cabernet sauvignon and merlot.
It’s certainly not quite the Super Tuscan red that it’s trying to be but again it's great value. It’s quite youthful on the bouquet with red cherries, soft dark plum, spices and a little cocoa.
The palate is medium bodied, with some characteristic bitter notes and some earthiness before a ripe, full finish.
At 15.5 per cent it definitely needs some food to accompany it and if you’re not having lamb then this would work with beef or maybe a chicken and tomato based casserole.
Alistair Gibson is proprietor of Hermitage Cellars, Emsworth. Call (01243) 431002 or e-mail