Café du Cycliste women's albertine cycling gilet: What is it?

A cycling vest with synthetic down at the front and a merino polar fleece panel at the back, complete with oversized rear cargo pockets and a single chest pocket. This good-looking, retro-style bit of kit comes from Café du Cycliste, the Nice-based brand known for high-quality technical cycling clothing designed with plenty of French flair. 

Café du Cycliste women's albertine cycling gilet: Why do I need it?

If you cycle in cold conditions, this vest is probably one of the best things you could do it in. The synthetic down and air pockets trap body heat to hold on to warmth while keeping things breathable, and the technical merino polar fleece is naturally wicking, thermoregulating and odour resistant (which, I'm sure we can all agree, is very good news indeed). What's more, the whole thing is stretchy for a sleek fit and added comfort at any riding position, and above all, is unbelievably light. You can also get away with wearing a shell over it, and a breathable jersey or t-shirt underneath.  

Café du Cycliste women's albertine cycling gilet: Should I buy it?

Absolutely yes. The vest is comfortable and cosy without being sweaty, and the spacious rear pockets are an absolute blessing. There are reflective details, too, but they're subtle enough that you can just about get away with wearing the gilet off the bike in emergencies. Shove a waterproof shell in one of the aforementioned pockets, and you'll be set for both commuting and longer weekend rides.