The mercury is on the rise – rosé season has begun. Although I am a proponent of year round rosé enjoyment, I realize a chilled rosé is a perfect accompaniment to summer. Its crisp, refreshing nature is a great way to keep cool, pairs well with summer cuisine, and is fun to drink.
Rosé is not just for Instagram. According to Slice Intelligence, rosé sales are up eighty-four percent among 55-64 year olds. This indicates significant growth in a category that shows no signs of slowing down. I believe it illustrates wine consumers understand rosé is no longer a sweet blush wine, rather a serious wine to be enjoyed like reds and whites.
The popularity of rosé has resulted in an endless selection. I am mesmerized by the multitude of pink hues on the rosé aisle at my local wine retailer, finding it hard to tell them apart. Here are some delicious rosés from around the globe, most under sure $20, to start your summer off right.
One of the world’s oldest wine regions, you have Provence to thank for all the pink. I had the pleasure of spending a week in Provence in the fall of 2016, it was everything I thought it would be – with rosé at its center. Each time I enjoy a glass of Provence rosé I am transported to that magical place.
2017 Chateau Ferry Lacombe Haedus Rosé Provence France ($21.99): 50% Grenache, 25% Syrah, 15% Cinsault, 10% Vermentino; pale pink; bright aromas of soft stone fruit, delicate summer red berries, and citrus; dry and crisp, high acidity with a refreshing delivery, a great food wine for summer cuisine.
South of France
Provence is believed to be the home of rosé, but quality rosé exists throughout the South of France. Languedoc, Roussillon, and the Rhône Valley offer affordable, quality rosé.
2017 M. Chapoutier Domaine de Bila-Haut “Les Vignes” Rosé IGP Pays d’Oc France ($15): Crafted of Grenache, Syrah, Cinsault; aromas of fresh summer strawberries, raspberry crème, nectarines, violets, and a touch of garrigue; this wine is a house favorite and a crowd-pleaser; bright acidity, crisp, refreshing, easy to enjoy with or without food.
2017 Paul Mas Côté Mas Aurore Rosé Languedoc France ($12.99): a blend of Grenache, Cinsault, and Syrah; pale pink; fun nose of candied violets and watermelon Jolly Rancher mingle with nectarines, and dried herbs; a refreshing palate with crisp acidity, a summer quaffer.
2017 Ferraton Père & Fils Samorëns Rosé Côtes du Rhône France ($15): a blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Cinsault; more savory than fruity this wine leads in aromas and flavors with herbal notes of rosemary and thyme mingled with crushed stone, fruit notes of strawberry and cherry understatedly joining in; pleasing palate with medium+ acidity that is crisp and refreshing.
2017 Chateau de Campuget Tradition Rosé Costières de Nîmes Rhône France ($11): 70% Syrah, 30% Grenache Noir; pale pink; soft aromas of cherry, strawberry, nectarines, orange blossom; light and bright on the palate, this is another crowd pleaser, crisp acidity it will pair great food.
Rosé is not the first wine that comes to mind when I think of Bordeaux. Rosé production is small but the quality is good and worth looking for.
2015 Chateau Lestrille Amelia Rosé Bordeaux France ($15): medium pink; strawberry, raspberry, dark cherry, herbs, a touch of minerality; this wine has some weight on the palate, medium acidity with a bit of a flabby finish but pairs well with BBQ and hot dogs.
Don’t forget the bubbly. Sparkling rosé is a treat any day, any time.
NV Bruno Paillard Rosé Première Cuvée Extra Brut Champagne France ($70): Pinot Noir with a secret touch of Chardonnay, a blend of grapes from twelve different vineyards; pale salmon; inviting aromas of raspberry, cranberry, pomegranate, nectarine, crushed flowers, trailing orchard fruit, with little evidence of autolysis; very lean on the palate, dry with high acidity, fine perlage, a serious bubbly, will age beautifully, serve now with food.
I am a big fan of Greek wine. The names of the grapes may be unfamiliar but the flavor profiles are reminiscent of familiar flavors. Step out of your comfort zone and try Greek rosé.
2017 La Tour Melas Idylle Rosé Achinos Greece ($20): 40% Agiorgitiko, 40% Grenache Noir, 20% Syrah; pale pink; inviting notes of fresh summer red berries, stone fruit, white floral notes, and soft tropical fruit; layered and complex, this is serious wine, crisp acidity and minerality mid-palate are engaging, drawing attention to the wine, a great example of rosé potential.
2017 Moratis Estate Rosé Paros Greece ($15): Crafted of organically farmed indigenous 100% Aidani Mavro grapes; this is a cool wine, inviting aromas of fresh summer red fruit, stone fruit, and violets; on the palate it is bright, light, and refreshing, an unfamiliar grape offering a familiar profile, crisp acidity adds to the enjoyment.
Spain is a solid choice for rosé. Tempranillo and Garnacha make delicious rosé and the wines are often value priced.
2016 Vivanco Rosé DOCa Rioja Spain ($11): 80% Tempranillo, 20% Garnacha; medium fuchsia; aromas of dark summer berries, fennel, and fresh roses; an easy drinking wine with bright acidity and a crisp mouth-feel.
2017 Beronia Rosé DOCa Rioja Spain ($8): 100% Tempranillo; pale pink with salmon hues; bright notes of raspberry, strawberry, and cherry are met with crushed rose petals and orange crème; a fresh, fruit-forward wine, bright acidity, nice mid-palate weight, a crowd pleaser to enjoy with or without food
I have enjoyed many rosés from Argentina and Chile. These two regions produce such high quality, affordable wines, why wouldn’t the rosé be just as good? Seek them out, you will be pleasantly surprised.
2018 Domaine Bousquet Rosé Uco Valley Argentina ($13): Crafted of organically grown grapes; 45% Malbec, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Sauvignon Blanc, 5% Pinot Gris; pale pink with salmon hues; fresh summer berries with savory fresh herbs; dry on the palate with nice weight from the Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon, crisp with high acidity for enjoyable sipping, a nice food wine.
2017 Casillero del Diablo Rosé Reserva Chile ($12): 60% Syrah, 30% Cinsault, 10% Carmenere; pale pink with salmon hues; very fruity with loads of red summer berries and watermelon; crisp acidity is ideal with or without food; a sure bet crowd pleaser.
Rosé goes with summer like sunglasses and tanning lotion. I enjoyed each of these wines, paired with a variety of foods and to sip and relax. Some offer more complexity, others just sip and go, all refreshing. I encourage you to step outside your usual rosé selections this summer, try some of these wines from around the globe.