The Tour Survival Kit 2017
It’s back! After the runaway success of last year’s Tour Survival Kit, we’ve been looking forward to releasing this pack for almost 11 months. Clearly, many of you feel the same way. Never before have we had so many enquires about bringing back a pack, and nor have we ever had to consider starting a waiting list before now!
Following the official tour route, this year’s Tour Survival Kit takes us on a vinous tour of France’s greatest wine regions as our riders make their way from Düsseldorf to Paris. Whether you know a little bit about wine and cycling, or a lot, this pack is the perfect partner to the many late nights you’re likely to spend watching the greatest bike race on earth.
Starting in Düsseldorf, our pack kicks off with mouth-watering Riesling from one of Germany’s finest producers, Gunderloch. And, after 21 gruelling stages, we fittingly celebrate the final stage of the Tour with brilliant grower Champagne from the great André Clouet. So sit back, relax and enjoy this year’s ride!
The Drinks List Team
1. GUNDERLOCH ‘Fritz's’ Riesling 2015
STAGE 1 – JULY 1
Welcome to Stage 1 of Le Tour! Tonight’s time trial takes place along the banks of the picturesque Rhine River, so it only seems right that our first wine – while produced some distance downstream – also has a strong affinity with this amazing body of water. Hailing from steep, southeast-facing slopes located high above the Rhine, Johannes Hasselbach’s liquid homage to his father, Fritz, is surely one of the best value examples of its kind produced anywhere on the planet. Expect a nose layered with smells of lemon sherbet, lime skin & spring flowers, while in your mouth it’s tightly sprung, chiselled, racy & dry. Drink it with veal schnitzel, slaw & hot mustard.
2. BRASSERIE DUPONT ‘Saison Dupont’
STAGE 2 – JULY 2
Tonight’s stage will see the riders cover 203.5 km from Germany to Belgium on a largely flat route, & while most of the evening’s ride takes place on German soil, we will end up in the beer mecca of Belgium! Saison Dupont has been brewed within the farmhouse of Belgian brewer Brasserie Dupont since 1844. Designed for the local workers of the area, it’s an incredibly thirst-quenching beer – especially if the sun is shining in your neck of the woods! Expect a pretty nose of summer fruit, while the palate is long, clean, crisp & refreshingly bitter. Drink it with moules frites.
3. HUGEL ‘Gentil’ 2015
Tonight’s racing gets underway in the historic spa town of Vittel, with all eyes on the climbs of Côte d’Esmoulières (573 m) & La Planche des Belles Filles (1035 m) at the stage’s conclusion. Less than 40 km from the finish line are the fairytale-like villages of Alsace. Historically, Alsatian wines produced from a blend of noble grape varieties were labelled as ‘Gentil’. Today, Hugel – the leading producer in the region – continues the tradition, bringing together the noble, but slightly uncool, five-some of Gewürztraminer, Pinot Gris, Riesling, Muscat & Sylvaner. The nose is as exotic as the blend suggests, while the palate is medium bodied & beautifully balanced. Drink it with Singapore noodles.
4. ROCHE DE BELLENE Bourgogne Rouge 2015
STAGE 7 – JULY 7
Tonight’s largely flat 213.5 km stage should be quick – especially the final 40 km from Argilly to the finish line in Nuits-Saint-Georges. We are passing through Burgundy – home to some of the most hallowed Chardonnay & Pinot Noir vineyards on earth. Burgundian young gun Nicolas Potel turns out a spellbinding range of wines from across the Côte d’Or. Those lucky enough to get their hands on even his most basic offering will be wowed smells of small red berries, wild mushrooms, sweet spice & cool earth, while in the mouth it’s mineral, bright & fresh as a daisy, with intense sour cherry fruit framed by fine grippy tannins. Drink it with Sunday roast chicken.
5. JEAN BOURDY Côtes du Jura Rouge 2013
STAGE 8 – JULY 8
Stage eight sees our riders in the region of the Jura. Starting in Dole, the riders will gradually make their way past the vineyards of Arbois until they reach the summit of Montée de la Combe de Laisia Les Molunes (1202 m), finishing 11 km later at Station des Rousses. The Jura is riddled with small artisan winemakers, & Jean Bourdy’s Côtes du Jura Rouge is a brilliant biodynamic blend of Pinot Noir (34%), Poulsard (33%) & Trousseau (33%). Ageing takes place in large old barrels for four years prior to bottling. The end result oozes smells of spiced cherry, plum & dried woody herbs, while the palate is mid-weight, beautifully knit, savoury & dry. Drink it with soft smelly cheese.
6. DOMINIQUE PIRON Beaujolais-Villages 2014
STAGE 9 – JULY 9
Tonight’s racing takes in climbs up the Col de Bérentin (1144 m), Col de la Biche (1316 m), Grand Colombier (1501 m) & the jaw-dropping Mont du Chat (1504 m), with the final 9 km at a gradient of 10.3%. Tonight’s start in Nantua is less than one hour’s drive from the beautiful vineyards of Beaujolais. Fourteenth generation Beaujolais grower Dominique Piron produces a range of wines that balance trademark Beaujolais brightness & intensity with a level of depth & structure rarely seen in the region’s entry-level wines. Drawn from 50yo Gamay vines, & screw-capped exclusively for Australia, expect layers of black cherry, wild raspberry & cool earth, while the palate is mid-weight, mineral-textured & balanced by a wash of dry chalky tannins to end. Drink it with cassoulet.
7. CHÂTEAU POITEVIN 2014
STAGE 10 – JULY 11
We are back & racing after a day of rest, & tonight’s gently undulating stage will take us through some of the most picturesque countryside in France. We’re in big red country here – most notably with the world famous commune of Bordeaux a mere hop, skip & jump away from our riders. Predominantly Merlot (55%), with Cabernet Sauvignon (40%) & Petit Verdot (5%), Poitevin is a delicious drink-now Cru Bourgeois that oozes smells of blackberry, blood plum & sweet black cherries. There’s some nicely knit cedar-like oak, too, while the palate is plush, medium bodied & well supported by a wash of finely judged tannins. Drink it with steak frites.
8. MARCEL Malbec 2015
COMTÉ TOLOSAN, FRANCE
STAGE 11 – JULY 12
We’re almost into the Pyrenees, & with the exception of the sprinters, tonight’s stage will see many riders preserving their legs for the coming few days. Wine-wise, we’re in the Southwest – home to a huge number of varieties, although full-bodied reds such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot & Malbec thrive. A former distinguished resident of Bordeaux, Malbec has found both a new home & a new lease of life in the more southerly hills of Comté Tolosan, beyond Cahors. Benefiting from long sunny days & super-cool nights, & representing serious value for money, Marcel comes packed with smells of violet, rose, blueberry & blood plum, while in your mouth it's soft, generous & served well by gentle acidity & finely slung tannin. Drink it with roast rib of beef.
9. MAS AMIEL ‘Vertigo’ Blanc 2015
CÔTES DU ROUSSILLON, FRANCE
STAGE 13 – JULY 14
It’s a short but intense stage this evening, with 101 km for our riders to cover. There are three significant climbs: Col de Latrape (1110 m), Col d’Agnes (1570 m) & Mur de Péguère (1375 m), finishing in Foix. We are also very close to the Languedoc-Roussillon – the largest wine-producing region in France. Drawn from the schist-laden slopes of Maury, north-east of Perpignan, Mas Amiel’s ‘Vertigo’ is a mouth-watering & motley field blend of Grenache Blanc, Macabeu, Roussanne & Marsanne. Expect to find a floral & pretty nose of spring flowers, stone fruit & river stones, while in your mouth there’s an amazing expanse of bright & exotic fruit, mineral texture & a dry snappy end. Drink it with smashed broad beans & pecorino on toast.
10. GUIGAL Côtes du Rhône 2012
SOUTHERN RHÔNE, FRANCE
STAGE 16 – JULY 16
After reaching the summit of the Col du Rouvey (1250 m), it’s almost all downhill for the final two-thirds of tonight’s stage to Romans-sur-Isère. The commune of the Southern Rhône Valley is our backdrop, & home to some of our favourite reds in France. Guigal’s much-loved Côtes du Rhône Rouge has long been the Southern Rhône Valley’s measuring stick for both quality & value. With nearly five years under its belt, the 2012 is a rare treat & drinking beautifully now. Expect smells of sour cherry, plum & spice, while the palate is medium bodied, with plenty of bright fruit, fresh acidity & fine chalky tannins to keep things balanced. Drink it with slow-braised lamb shanks & mash.
11. JULES Rosé Sec 2015
STAGE 19 – JULY 21
Tonight’s stage will be the first time a time trial has ever been held in Marseille, & it will take place exclusively within the city’s streets. As we’re in the commune of Provence, we are in serious rosé territory tonight. The rocky soils & sun-drenched vineyards of Provence provide a near-perfect environment for grape growing. Merlot (60%) & Carignan (40%) are the stars here, producing a lush juicy rosé crammed with raspberry, red currant & dried herb smells, while a fresh fruity palate gives way to crunchy acidity & a clean, drying finish. A crusty baguette, some good cheese, salami & a handful of salty olives will be perfect.
12. ANDRÉ CLOUET Brut Nature Rosé NV
STAGE 21 - JULY 23
After three long & epic weeks, we have finally reached this year’s final stage! With the racing all but done, tonight is more of a leisurely ride into Paris than a race, & what better way for us to end than with France’s most famous wine, Champagne! In the wake of a changing global economy, small-scale & grower Champagnes – growers who traditionally would have supplied grapes to some of the region’s biggest players – continue to appear, & this stylish example from André Clouet is among the best of those going around. From 100% Pinot Noir, expect to find smells of wild strawberry, brioche & sweet spice coupled with a mouthful of tiny bubbles, terrific length of flavour & a long structured finish. Take a bottle to your favourite Japanese restaurant.