Coeur de Cardeline Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016

Coeur de Caroline Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016, France, 13%

(£8.99, Co-op) 

Ching-He Huang is well known for her deliciously modern, healthy take on Chinese food. The dish she cooked up on Saturday Kitchen for Chinese New Year was no exception. Hong Kong style fried fish and squid balls with dark soy noodles both looked and tasted absolutely delicious: beautifully balanced and bursting with flavour.

When we tried the dish at home, we kicked off with a few fish-friendly whites, several of which worked incredibly well. An Albariño from Galicia offered a brilliantly subtle match, while a New Zealand Riesling was a punchier option.

This pretty Provence rosé, however, came out on top. Not only is it superbly well made for the money, it also has plenty of ripe, wild strawberry fruit within its traditional dry and elegant framework. With both the fish and the smoky, salty, savoury noodles, it was ideal.

‘This is gorgeous, it’s so drinkable even without the food’ enthused Ching. Show host Donal Skehan picked up on how it coped with the chilli oil: ‘it does stand up to the spice in the dish as well’. Fellow chef Ken Hom summed things up in his own characteristically delightful words, saying, ‘the wine is just perfect with it, really’.

It was a super easy dish to match and one I urge you to try as spring approaches.

(Susie, 6.5/10, Feb 2018)