Santé on Valentine’s Day: 4 French drinks to celebrate with
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Maison Mirabeau Dry Gin
To celebrate Valentine’s Day, Maison Mirabeau has collaborated with Franco-Japanese artist Tiffany Bouelle to create an exclusive gift box featuring a smaller, 20cl bottle of its signature pink Dry Gin. Tasked with capturing the spirit of the French Riviera, the artist has designed a pretty pink ‘Twilly’, a versatile scarf made from 100% silk that can be worn around the neck, as a hair tie or around the wrist. Provence-based Maison Mirabeau was founded by Jeany and Stephen Cronk in 2010 and after huge success in the world of rosé wine, they went on to launch their award-winning pink gin in 2020.
Serve with: Maison Mirabeau recommends Fever Tree Aromatic Tonic
Champagne Drappier Rosé de Saignée
Champagne Drappier in Urville, Aube has been a family business since 1808 and produces its rosé using the saignée method, which involves several days of maceration to release the colour from the skins of the pinot noir grape. Ideal as an apéritif, it pairs well with antipasti, salmon, and strawberries.
Tasting notes: Hints of red fruits and violet on the nose with a lightly spiced note.
Available from £49.99 from various UK retailers including Friarwood Fine Wines, The Champagne Company UK Ltd, North and South Wines.
Champagne Drappier offers cellar visits with tastings priced at €16 per person.
Champagne Castelnau Brut Reserve NV
Located in the heart of Reims in the Champagne region, Champagne Castelnau is a grape growers’ collective covering 809 hectares of vineyards, overseen by chef de cave Carine Bailleul. The Brut Reserve NV is its flagship cuvée, spending at least five years on the lees.
Tasting notes: Tempts with green apple, brioche and a touch of flint on the nose, with pin prick bubbles lifting the palate, all supported by bright acidity and a superbly refreshing finish.
£32, available in the UK from The Wine Society.
If you’re a fan of both gin and champagne, the classic French 75 cocktail combines the two! Pour 1tbsp of lemon juice, 1tsp of sugar syrup and 50ml of gin into a cocktail shaker and fill up with ice. Shake well and strain into a champagne flute and top up with champagne. Garnish with a strip of lemon zest.