I am mostly aware of Calvet for their Bordeaux wines, including a very agreeable Cremant. I was pleased to be sent this selection of wines demonstrating that Calvet is striving to produce France’s regional styles at entry-level prices, and in a sustainably conscious way.
It is fascinating that Calvet is part of the Grands Chais de France (GCF) Group, which are responsible for 20% of all French wine exports - that is HUGE! With 2500 employees the company has committed to working across the company to reduce water usage and scope 3 emissions. It is always fabulous when big players start to take action. It sends a signal that the industry is serious.
Calvet Haut Poitou 2021 @ Waitrose £10.99
A Loire Sauvignon Blanc, Lime, grapefruit, grassy note. Refreshing, clean, very pleasant. Will charm you into another glass. A great choice for delicate sushi dishes, or perhaps autumnal shellfish as they come back into vogue.
Calvet Rosé d’Anjou @ Ocado £8.00
Lower in alcohol at 11% making it good for summer drinking, this rich salmon coloured rosé comes from the Anjou region of the Loire Valley and is made from a blend of Cabernet Franc, Grolleau, and Gamay grapes grown on clay/schist, and clay/limestone soils. A strawberry fresh wine with a clean almost herbaceous finish. An absolutely cracking pairing for late summer, and autumnal sunsets.
Calvet Muscadet @ Sainsburys £7.00, Tesco £5.95, Co-op £6.00
Made in the Loire Valley from Melon de Bourgogne grapes this is a great example of how classic Muscadet should taste – fresh, fruity and zesty with hints of tropical fruits. We tasted this in company and our guests all voiced their approval. Perfect for evening picnics on the beach.
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Calvet Chablis @ Ocado £20
Chablis is made from 100% Chardonnay grapes grown in an area in northern Burgundy. This one from the Calvet range has flavours of grapefruit, lemon zest, crushed shell, and firm acidity. Perfectly matched here with local fish and chips from a Dorset chippy.
Calvet Prestige Côtes du Rhône Villages @ Tesco £7.50
The prestige range is named after the prestigious Diplôme du Presitge de la France received by Maison Calvet in 1958. A very typical village wine from this region that continues to set a global standard. Rich and pleasurable and perfect with darker game meats or roasted vegetables.
Calvet Fitou Le Grand Roi @ Ocado £10.50
This wine pays tribute to the Calvet family, as Jean-Louis Calvet, the grandfather of the founder of Maison Calvet was born in Pouzols in the Aude region in Languedoc, which is where these vineyards are planted. Made from a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre grapes aged for 8 months in French oak, this deep purple wine has intense blackcurrant aromas, silky tannic structure and pleasing length of flavour. Versatile for a range of dishes but especially good oily aubergine, roasted garlic, and pasta (as seen).
Calvet Murmure de Rose, Côtes de Provence rosé – New but not currently UK available
Not yet available in the UK, but here’s a sneak preview as it soon will be! A very pretty pale pink rosé in an attractive cut glass style bottle, made in Provence, the home of rosé. A blend of Syrah, Grenache, Cinsault and Mourvèdre, coming together to give a range of subtly pleasing flavours that include pear, raspberries, and herbs. A perfect crowd pleaser.
Calvet Châteauneuf-du-Pape – not yet UK available
Contrary to what most people think, Calvet was in fact first established in the Rhône Valley in Tain l’Hermitage in 1818. This classic wine is a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre aged on the lees and then part of it in oak. Rich and complex with aromas of fig and sweet spices with flavours of damson and candied fruit. Dark and alluring. We served with gourmet pizzas and it was good to see people pause and comment on the quality of this deserving Chateauneuf.
Calvet Prestige Côtes du Rhône @ Morrisons £8.25
A blend of Grenache, Syrah, Carignan and Mourvèdre, this is an impressive wine with a burst of spices from the Rhône Valley. Impressive wine representing excellent value, and especially perfect for the Autumnal season.