The Café du Cycliste Josette jersey is stylish and versatile: warm enough to wear in temperatures as low as five degrees with a suitable base layer, and able to shrug off light rain.
Prolonged drizzle made little impact on the Josette jersey, and even steady rain fall failed to penetrate. While we’d reach for something more robust and with full sleeves in heavy rain, in recent conditions, worn over a merino base layer and paired with Café du Cycliste’s matching Loulou arm warmers, we’ve been equipped to deal with all that this admittedly mild start to winner has thrown at us.
The drop tail was sufficiently dropped to offer some protection on a wet weather ride foolishly made sans mudguards. Other features proved similarly well-judged: the long flap that extended across the top of all three tail pockets – a sensible choice for a garment to be worn in the rain – didn’t restrict access unnecessarily, and the Napoleon chest pocket, a staple of the winter jersey, was similarly welcome, if limited by its depth to bank cards and notes.
We were impressed by the fit, which proved sufficiently close to prevent unnecessary flapping in the wind, even with the proprietary Italian fabric that, unlike the lycra or sport wool of a summer jersey, didn’t offer a typically figure hugging cut.
Rain simply beaded off the waterproof zip, which reached journey’s end in a ‘garage’ at the collar. While we’re on the subject of the collar, this is the only aspect of the Josette jersey that we’d modify. While at 5cm, it provided excellent protection from the elements, it came a little high for our liking, and while not uncomfortable, we remained aware of its presence. A couple of centimetres lower would still represent an acceptable balance between comfort and protection, in our judgment.
Finally, the appearance. The look of a garment and the degree to which it finds favour is very much a matter of personal preference, of course, but we considered the Josette jersey to be a stylish number. We were fulsome in our praise of the matching Loulou arm and leg warmers and the same subtle mix of black with contrasting chocolate panels is used here. The collar is topped with a blue, white, and green tricolore, which while from a different palette, didn’t jar. The large logo on the left sleeve, however, a buxom lady swigging from a bidon, might be considered risqué in some quarters.
The Café du Cycliste Josette jersey is an excellent choice for spring, autumn, and even the mild conditions that have characterised the opening weeks of this year’s winter. The concept of a waterproof short-sleeved jersey is one we like, having previously tested Castelli’s Gabba, and the Josette offers more of the same versatility.
Size: XS to XXL
Website: Cafe du Cycliste