Pink, it was love at first sight
Pink Champagne has become synonymous with luxury lifestyle, glamour and a good dose of fun. It has become one of the many must-have champagnes on board private and charter yachts cruising the Mediterranean. Yet, we often forget that Pink Champagne is incredibly food-friendly and can be enjoyed with a variety of dishes.
At the Monaco Yacht Show this year, I chose a Laurent Perrier Cuvée Rosé NV as my wine of choice to pair with the most amazing cut of beef carpaccio. That’s when it dawned on me, that rosé Champagne is too often overlooked when choosing a wine pairing. More often than not we think of pink Champagne as an aperitif before a meal or simply as a celebration or chill-out drink, yet it can be the perfect accompaniment to your next dish.
The Laurent Perrier Rosé was chosen for the first course of the ‘Elemental Overload’ masterclass for crew organised by S.E.A -T.I.P.S & Acrew. The guests were led to the table blindfolded with the aim of heightening their sense of smell. I therefore wanted a wine that was immediately fresh and fruity on the nose.
Once poured into the glass, the whiff of crisp and fresh red berry aromas was instantly recognizable. When the persistent mousse eventually subsided, there was a most elegant pale-salmon coloured Champagne in the glass.
Once the blindfolds were removed, the guests enjoyed the beautiful contrast between the earthy reds and browns of the carpaccio dish, with the fresh and delicate rosé in the glass. Laurent Perrier are very proud of using the Saignée method to extract such a vivacious colour. The Saignée method means that they leave the 100% Pinot Noir grapes in contact with their skins between 48hrs and 72hrs, allowing the red pigment from the skin to be transferred to the must (grape juice) to reach the desired colour.
The most important part of the pairing is the taste, and I was not disappointed. On the palate it was like diving head-first into a basket of freshly cut strawberries, cherries and raspberries. The sharp and fresh berry flavours and creamy and rich texture is superb, yet distinctively Laurent-Perrier. The finish is long and supple, but the racy acidity keeps you wanting more. The fruitiness of the Champagne was a refreshing yet elegant pairing to the umami flavours of the carpaccio that was served with mushrooms and truffles. The combination was simply sublime and the typical palate-cleansing properties of Champagne left the guests’ palate ready for the next dish.
Strangely, a rosé Champagne pairing is often overlooked, but the refreshing red berry flavours are often perfect with most summer dishes. The high acidity and freshness of the fruit is what makes this wine ideal with most food. Let’s not forget that pink bubbles are fun, so more often than not it’s a win-win situation. So next time you’re out at sea and wondering what wine to bring out with lunch, don’t forget that the bottle of pink Champagne stored down below might be the perfect stylish pairing.