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France Under One Roof Claire Hu wine

Published:  18 March, 2009

More than 50 importers and producers will be exhibiting at the France Under One Roof tasting next Tuesday (March 24) at Lord's Cricket Ground between 10am and 5.30pm.

The event will feature new wines and new vintages from the UK's leading specialist French importers, including the biggest of them all ? Thierry's. Others include Guy Anderson, Berkmann, Boutinot, Producteurs Plaimont, Les Caves de Pyrene and Chalié Richards.

A collaboration with Sopexa will focus on the diversity of styles and price points that France has to offer. Sopexa will be showcasing 21 wines from producers seeking representation in the UK, as chosen by an independent panel of wine experts. With a recommended price of £6+, all regions will be represented in the tasting.

The second feature will be an area dedicated to matching different foods to various French wine styles. It will be run by food and wine-matching journalist Fiona Beckett, who will be experimenting with different dishes paired to wines from the first stand seeking representation.

The new zone will feature small, bite-sized samples of Italian, Spanish, British, Vietnamese, Chinese, Indian and French cuisine with the aim of highlighting the versatility of French wines.

Beckett says food and wine-pairing suggestions on menus, as well as more special deals on wine, were vital to encourage dining in a recession.

"Restaurants need to be doing more matching and more deals, in a similar way to the supermarkets. If people are shown more options they are more willing to give things a go."
Beckett says the aim of the workshop was to encourage people to become more open-minded about food and wine pairings. "The main thing is to avoid the obvious and show how flexible French wine can be with all sorts of food," she says.

"For example, people always tend to think of rosé for barbecues and picnics, but it can go really well with Asian food. There are all kinds of possibilities.

"France has an amazing variety of wines, at all price points, and sometimes we take that for granted in our quest for novelty," she continues.

The pairings available to sample at the stand, open from 12.30pm to 4.30pm, include: Vietnamese prawn noodle salad with rosé; crispy duck pancakes with cucumber and hoisin sauce with red Bordeaux; Spanish meatballs with a gutsy Rhône and Mozzarella antipasti with a Provencal white.

For more information about the tasting, log on to