With the RBN’s recent launch of The Rugby Cellar, we decided to offer a guide to the most popular wine types that even the front five will understand, so allow us to introduce our Rugby Cellar Wine XV.
We’ll start up front with the pack. Keep an eye on our website to see who’ll be lining up behind the heavyweights. Do you agree with our selections?
Props – Shiraz
Sometimes sweet, spicy in cool weather and more mellow when warm, a good Shiraz is the embodiment of the prop forward, who is usually far too busy conserving energy to hit anyone when the weather approaches room temperature.
Hooker – Cote Du Rhone
Spicy and fiery, you would undoubtedly find these reds playing at hooker. Fittingly, the region’s wines can be quite basic, but it is more than capable of producing the wine equivalent of the famed logophile Brian Moore.
Locks – Champagne
I know what you’re thinking. What has a lock got in common with Champagne, apart from the odd John Eales conversion or the unfortunate scrum-half or two being crushed like a grape? Well, a huge percentage of Champagne sales occur between late November and early January, coinciding neatly with the short period of time (at least in the Northern Hemisphere) when these huge, semi-mobile lumps are genuinely effective on the rugby pitch.
Openside Flanker – Rose
Rose is not a grape or region, but a type of wine, neither a red nor a white. Much like an amateur openside who likes to hang around in the ten-channel, playing as neither back nor forward, they are also at their best when the sun is shining.
Blindside Flanker – Cabernet Sauvignon
‘Cab Savs’ are wines for all seasons. Deep, complex and perfect when paired with heavier dishes, they are the unheralded champion that is the blindside flanker.
Number Eight – Pinot Noir
Number Eights are often suitably high-profile to be talked about as amongst the world’s very best and their wine counterpart is no different. Overtones of earth and leather can be found on both sides of this match and no team or cellar is complete without one of the highest quality.