It appears that summer has arrived, at least part-time anyhow. It will probably come as no surprise that many of my favorite summer pastimes included wine and food. The pastime I have been indulging most recently; lazy sunny afternoons on a patio.
Both Provence locations have fantastic patios. My personal favourite is the large scenic patio at P2 (Marinaside). Sure, I’m probably a bit biased, but I have to say that Provence Marinaside has the BEST patio in downtown Vancouver. A beautiful view of False Creek and exceptional people watching, add to that great food, extensive wine selection and warm service. What more could a girl ask for?
So what will I be sipping on my next lazy afternoon in the sun? I usually lean towards fun, uncomplicated, quaffable bottles. It is hard sometimes, being a wine professional, to simply enjoy a wine without over-analyzing every little detail. I’m looking for a wine that is delicious on its own but flexible enough to pair with whatever nibbles we may indulge in. After a quick scan of the wine list, a couple of charming choices from a local favorite, Clos du Soleil, caught my eye.
Clos du Soleil is a small artisan winery located in the beautiful Similkameen Valley. Winemaker Ann Sperling is something of a vet in the BC wine industry. I’ve been a fan since tasting their first vintage almost five years ago.
I’m sure that anyone that reads this blog has figured out that I am a huge sucker for a good rosé. Clos du Soleil’s 2011 Rosé is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine is very slightly off-dry with a very pretty strawberry hue in the glass. Bold fruit flavors of berries and vanilla dominate the nose and palate. This wine is refreshing and approachable without being too complex. The forward acidity and moderate weight make this wine very food friendly, though it is plenty delicious all by itself!
Clos du Soleil’s 2010 Pinot Blanc is also a great choice for afternoon quaffing. Again, very slightly off-dry with aromas of red apple, apricot, and a subtle minerality. The palate has a slight richness to it, with plenty of friendly peaches and cream to keep you sipping. This wine would be delicious with most seafood dishes, but not unlike the rosé, it is delicious on its own!
A couple of tasty wines and a sunny day is enough to convince me to spend the afternoon on a gorgeous patio. However, if for some reason you need a little more incentive, for the summer Provence Marinaside is throwing something of a patio party in the afternoons, featuring a selection of local fresh oysters for $1.50 each. To add to the fun, while they are in season live local spot prawns are $20 per pound, prepared however you like them (I like Provençal- sautéed in garlic, butter, lemon, and brandy) These deals are available from 2:30 to 5:30 every day, which is a plenty good excuse to cut out of work early next time the sun is shining. See you there!