Thursday, June 23, 2011

Rose: Summer's Perfect Wine

Looking for a wine to go with an array of summer foods, from grilled chicken and shrimp to meal-size salads or homemade, lighter pizzas and flatbreads? Look no further than the blushing beauties from France, California, Spain and Italy. In addition to their food-friendly, dry to semi-dry flavors, most roses are priced to move. They don't usually cellar well and are meant for drinking young, so look for the 2009 or 2010 vintages.
Here are a few suggestions.

2009 Bieler Père et Fils Sabine Coteaux d'Aix-en-Provence Rosé

This great value offers delicate floral aromas that shift to wild strawberry and watermelon flavors. An underlying spiciness on the palate carries through into a broad and crisp finish.

2009 La Vieille Ferme Côtes du Ventoux Rosé

A dark pink hue hints at the tart berry and currant flavors to come in this rich rosé. 

2009 Jules Côtes de Provence Rosé

Julian Faulkner works with different boutique growers each year, which allows him the flexibility to source grapes "wherever the best value and quality can be found on a particular vintage." His aromatic rosé—a blend of Grenache, Cinsault and the lesser-known Tibouren—is elegant, fruit-forward and herbal.

Rosados from Spain -- try to find one made from 100% garnacha, such as Bodegas Borsao Borsao

Crios de Susana Balbo Rose of Malbec 2010
This Argentinian winemaker is known for malbecs and torrontes, but I also love this rose, which has more body than most and a deep pink color.

"Eye of the Toad" 2010 Toad Hollow Rose
Most California roses just don't measure up, IMHO, but this one is done in the French style: very dry, good body and delicious.

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