Provençal Pairings: Wine with Food

Casual Elegance

by David Scott Allen

Winery: Domaine le Fouques
Cuvée: Cuvée de l’Aubigue
Appellation: Côtes de Provence
Type: White
Vintage: 2013
Grape Varieties: Rolle (80%), Ugni Blanc (10%), and Clairette (10%)
Alcohol: 13.5%
Average Retail Price: U.S. $15.00, FR €10.00

I love arriving at a dinner party knowing that it isn’t going to be a “state affair.” I want to relax – from the apéros to the dessert – and none of it need be fancy, especially the food and wine. (N.B. I still want crystal, silver, and linen…) Today, I made a Crumble au Poulet – simple, elegant, and very tasty fare. To serve, I wanted something that would match the simplicity of the meal, and yet be sophisticated and complex. I also needed something to go with a bit of spice, as the crumble topping is laced with a sweet curry. I chose a 2013 Domaines les Fouques Cuvée de l’Aubigue, and was not disappointed. On the nose, I was greeted by honeysuckle and a dish of cinnamon. First pre-food sips brought melon, green apple, and pine resin. It has a great mouth feel – a nice, light mineral quality on the tongue, and then bursts of bright acid in the back of the mouth. With food – especially the curry – the melon shifted to strawberry and opened up beautifully. The wine was full of delightful surprises, and is definitely a wine that shines with its food pairing. As an added bonus, this is an organic wine and certified biodynamic.

This will not be an easy wine to find in the U.S. – it is available through Chambers Street Wines. For a close second, you can use pretty much any wine that is predominantly Rolle, or a Vermentino – the same grape by its Italian name.

For the Crumble au Poulet recipe, please visit Cocoa & Lavender.

Other Pairings: Seafood (shrimp, lobster, scallops, and crab), roasted poultry, and perhaps a Moroccan tagine or couscous made with poultry or seafood. Bear in mind that this wine works well with light spice; heavier spiced dishes (especially Moroccan) might need something a bit bolder. A perfect wine to accompany anything bathed in a beurre blanc.

Post and Photos by David Scott Allen


  1. David,
    You are so right. Provence white is like finding Greek anything. But definitely worth the look. Val Joanis near Pertuis does a very good, and reasonably priced viognier, and I am fairly certain it can be found in the US. On occasion a good merchant will stock Cassis whites, which are very fine indeed. I will look around my neighborhood for les Fouques.

    • Jerry,
      I really wish more Provençal whites were readily available – there are so few here in Tucson that it is pretty pathetic! The viognier you mentioned sounds really good – I will have to take a look for it, as well. Hope you are able to find Les Fouques!

    • We haven’t been by Val Joanis in a few years but will make a point to stop this summer!

      • This lovely property is under new ownership. Wines are as good as ever, but changes include a slight charge to visit the lovely gardens. They are also doing an outdoor film showing from time to time.

  2. Thx for the recommendation. It is always so hard (scary!) to think of what might go well with curry. Especially thx for the substitutions available.

    • We’d love to know what you find and how it works!

    • Curry is a tough one, but I think you will find this works nicely with a very light curry. I think a sturdier viognier would work nicely with more intense curries. Thanks for reading!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.