We just returned from a great break in the mountains of Colorado, where tumbling rapids and vast green valleys speckled with grazing animals filled my California-parched English soul, and where the seat of my jeans was thoroughly tested by riding up a mountain on a draft horse, which could only be described as the equivalent of a Land Rover with hooves.
As always, it’s good to be home, and while it’s not quite a sprawling Colorado ranch, we do love our little micro farm with our flock of backyard chickens, four ducks, and Jumbo, our very vocal rooster. (Luckily, our neighbors are early risers!)
The label’s regal rooster – or cockerel, as we say in England – might have been the first thing to draw me to this week’s wine, but I have to admit, when I tasted it, I let out a small crow of delight.
Piron Beaujolais Le Coq Leon 2019 ($14), Named after Leon the rooster who heads up the resident flock of hens which run in the vineyard and help keep it pest free, this Beaujolais is just a joy to drink.
Many of you have loved Dominique Piron’s Morgon, Chenas and Brouilly – all wonderfully complex wines made from the Gamay grape. This is a different beast, but equally enjoyable. A blend of 95% Gamay and 5% of an unapproved grape called Garneret (a Gamay cross, which means it does not qualify for the AOC of Beaujolais), this is a light, refreshing red, best served chilled and perfect for a sunny day at the beach or as an early evening aperitif while the sun is still lingering in the sky. It has the smell of summer on the nose and bright, fruity raspberries on the palate. This wine is made for laughter and fun. Serve with a plate of chopped grilled sausages or a little goat cheese salad.