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A Sommelier's Blog - Rose' Wine
"If God forbade drinking, would He have made wine so good?"
Grape du Jour: Rose' [roh-ZAY]
French for "pink" or "rose-colored," used in the wine world to refer to wines of this color. Usually made with red grape varietals, Grenache, Cinsault, Syrah and others. The skins are removed after two or three days of maceration. This leaves the gorgeous color that Rose's are known for. The American misconception is that these are sweet wines. Most of these wines are dry and have a strawberry, watermelon, and perfumey rose notes with hints of spice. These wines are perfect for warm summer days, being low in alcohol and tannins. They are perfect for spring/summer salads that have fruit, nuts and mild cheeses and light greens. Some of these wines do have the structure to pair perfectly with grilled white fishes, vegetables, light tomato sauces, and shrimp. The best Rose's come from the south of France. The southern Rhone Valley is famous for the different styles of Rose'. Most of these wines are made with a blend of Grenache and Mourvedre'. Taval is the main town that specializes in Rose' wine. Some of these wines can fetch a tidy price but most are very reasonable. The value driven wines are made all over the Languedoc-Roussillon region of France. New World producers are turning out great Rose's as well. The Central Coast of California, due to the amount of Rhone varietals grown in this region, are making very beautiful and flavorful Rose wine. Try something new, try Rose'
Domaine Tempier - Bandol Rose' 2009, Taval, France
Tablas Creek - Rose' 2009, Paso Robles, California
Tolosa Winery - Rose', Grenache 2009, Edna Valley, California
Jean-Luc Colombo - Vin de Pays de Mediterranee' Rose' Cape Bleue 2009, Vins Pays D'oc, France
A little wine talk:
Well, it looks like the weather is going to be nice to us for a little bit. Time to get some sun, head out to golf course, take a walk on the beach. Time to start thinking about pulling the BBQ out and planning summer vacations. Time to start thinking of a new crop of produce, strawberries, corn, zucchini, and watermelon. Hey, I just made a salad, add a light vinigarette and some goat cheese. Money!! Time to start thinking of wine. With a new harvest of spring and summer produce, we have to think of spring and summer wines. We already started with Rose's, now it's time to have some fun! Europe is the place to go for value driven, fun white wines and soft to medium bodied red wines. The Rhone Valley region of France offers light to medium bodied red and white wines that are crisp, minerally with apple, pear, and honeysuckle notes for the whites and soft cherry, rose and lavender flavors for the reds.
Germany offers some fine Reislings that are perfect for spring and summer fare. You don't have to get the full-blown Spatlese's, the ones we are used to, try a Kabinett style of Reisling. These are a little drier than most and offer a lime zest, peach, and apricot flavors. Austria's Gruner Veltliners have a clean grapefruity and mineral way about them. Spain's Verdejo's and Albarinos, Portugal's Vino Verdhe's, and Italy's Trebbiano's and Muscato's. There is a world of fun out there. Go find it!!
I Need to talk about something that bugs the heck out me - Snobs and know-it-all's. These people make wine drinking insufferable. Why do I need a retort every time I talk wine with my friends. Why do I need to read about food and wine pairings that are more adjectives than nouns. Do we all have some innate sense of smell and taste comparable to a bear? I was always taught in the restaurant business to keep things simple. The more on the plate, the more chance for mistakes.
I have a friend who always over-thinks blind tasting. She get's the core of the tasting, then looks way more into it than need be. She can never stick to her guns. Wine is meant for us to enjoy and relish with friends and food, right! Let's leave it at that.
Cheers and Drink Good Wine!
The Wine Lover