Wine that doesn’t suck: It’s Rosé Season, Y’All!

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Rosé Season is HERE.

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Imagine this:

The weather is perfect, PERFECT. Mornings are slightly crisp and cool. Afternoons are sunny and bright and the evenings…well, the evenings could not be more delightful. Warm, breezy, gorgeous. I love summer. The skies are clear and bright and at night they just go on forever full of bright, sparkly stars.

Sitting outside on your patio, reading a book, while the dogs sleep on the grass, is the ideal time for a chilly, fresh glass of rosé. Low-alcohol, refreshing…it makes the best afternoon sipper.

Rosé also is a wonderful pairing for all the yummy foods of the season.

You really can’t go wrong with rosé.

So, here is a list of some of my favorites:

Let’s start with Rosé Bubbles, shall we?

J Brut Rosé

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I know, I know….you’re going to start to think that I’m on the J Winery payroll (I wouldn’t mind that…could get paid in wine??) but I truly am in love with this winery’s brut rosé bubbles.

I also love the new packaging. The clear glass bottle allows the gorgeous color of the pink bubbles to shine through! Look for this yummy sparkler at your local fine wine shops or just contact the winery directly HERE and order some up.

Soter Vineyards Brut Rosé

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I’m a HUGE fan of Soter. You will have seen them in posts past and will see them again in posts future. Their wines are lovely. The Soter team is amazing from the owners, Tony and Michelle Soter to James Cahill, the talented winemaker, to all the staff on-site. It’s a special place, with fabulous wines.

The Soter Brut Rosé is some of my most favorite bubbly. It is exquisitely made and just extremely drinkable. Either with food or just on it’s own.

One of my favorite things about it is the story behind WHY Tony Soter started making sparkling wine. At a wine dinner I attended at the estate a few years ago, he simply said: “It’s my wife’s favorite wine, so I make it for her.” I love that.

The production on this deep pink sparkly yumminess is pretty limited. Visit their website HERE to look into ordering some direct. Or join their wine club. Their other wines are equally as delightful.

Now, on to some lovely still rosé for your sipping pleasure….

Triennes Rosé

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I discovered this little beauty, last summer, in one of my favorite restaurants in Santa Monica, Rustic Canyon. Check this cool spot out HERE

Coming from a VERY prestigious wine house, this wine is gorgeous and complex and elegant. Here’s a bit more info……

Grape variety: Cinsault dominated blend

Colour: Rosé

Tasting notes: This blush wine is made from grapes pressed following only a very brief period of skin contact. It results in a rosé of a very light pink color. An aromatic nose of red fruits and candy is followed by a round, harmonious and seamless palate. This wine will seduce you by its freshness and elegance.

About Triennes

In the late 1980′s Jacques Seysses, founder of Domaine Dujac, and Aubert de Villaine, co-owner of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, started looking for a vineyard in the south of France. They were driven by the conviction that some great wines could be produced in the Var, an area typically known for its rosés and thin table wines. As Jacques explains it:

“I started thinking of buying a vineyard outside of Burgundy when vineyard prices soared in the mid-eighties, making it almost impossible to operate with a return on one’s investment. I was interested in going to an area where the benchmark had yet to be set, and where I could experiment with other grape varietals.”

Aubert was interested in joining as a silent partner, and a good friend from Paris, Michel Macaux, wanted to invest both time and money into the venture. After much searching, at the end of 1989, they came upon the Domaine du Logis-de-Nans, an existing estate in Provence, northeast of Marseille and due east of Aix-en-Provence. The vineyard was poorly managed, there was a very basic winery, containing some large and dirty storage tanks, and no housing attached. Futhermore, the 46 hectare vineyard was mostly planted with Ugni blanc, Cinsault and Carignan, varietals which the partners were only moderately interested in. What caught their attention was the slope itself. The three friends were attracted by the southern exposure of the vineyards and the clay and limestone soils, which in some areas resemble the great terroirs of Burgundy, in other the top coteaux of St. Emilion. Most vines in the area are planted on valley floors in deep soils; here, the entire estate was ‘plein coteaux’, on a south-facing slope, rich in limestone and with a low content in organic matter: too poor for agriculture but excellent for viticulture.

The estate which showed evidence of settlement and culture since Etruscan times, spreads between altitudes of 420-450m above sea level and lies on a gently sloping hillside between the mountain ranges of Monts Aurelien and Sainte Baume, guaranteeing cool nights and, as was found out, a long growing season, propitious to good acidities and complexity. Core soil samples were taken and analysed in Burgundy before the purchase to confirm the site’s potential.

The estate was renamed Domaine de Triennes, after the triennia, festivities in the honour of Bacchus that took place every 3 years in Roman times. The ‘tri’ part of the name now reflects the three original partners.

Moving on…..

Domaine de Savard Cheverny Rosé Delaille

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This wine was introduced to me by the very talented staff at Little Bird Bistro in Portland last summer. I hardly ever ordered wine myself while dining at Little Bird. Andy Fortgang, owner/wine buyer, is so talented at choosing wines for his list that I have never tried before that I would just ask that he pick something for me.

I cannot recall ever being disappointed.

Check out Little Bird Bistro (one of my all-time fave places to eat and spend a LONG rainy afternoon to evening) and make sure you have plenty of time to savor a great experience. And take a cab.

The Cheverny is a beautiful, light salmon color with a lovely minerality and orange-blossom nose. NOT sweet, this rosé is pretty close to perfect for my palate. Dry, fresh, tasty.

Bummer for me that I have not been able to source it retail…so far. I will keep searching!

Next up:

One of my all-time favorites…for years and YEARS…..

Etude Rosé

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Etude Winery is one of my favorite wineries of all-time. I love visiting every time I make a trip to Sonoma. I have also been a fan of their rose for many years and typically start my spring “season” with six wonderful bottles.

Some notes from the winemaker:

Winegrowing: 
The Etude Rosé of Pinot Noir is sourced exclusively from our Estate vineyard in Carneros. We tend the grapes for our Rosé to the same exacting standards employed in our meticulously farmed plots for red wines. We grow and ultimately pick focusing on intensity of flavor, strong varietal delineation and ideal natural balance. The wine is minimally processed—whole berry pressed then drained to previously used barrels to ferment to dryness. After approximately 4 months of aging, the wine has excellent clarity and is ready for bottling, with a slight addition of red wine to fine-tune the color.

Tasting Notes
This salmon pink Rosé of Pinot Noir offers vibrant aromas of fresh frambois strawberries, red cherries and sweet blood oranges. Flavors of strawberry rhubarb and cherry persist on the palate and combine with a pleasing note of minerality. The perfectly-balanced acidity makes this wine a wonderful complement to many foods and al fresco dining.

Etude is a must visit winery and a MUST SIP Rosé. Check out more on them HERE

Finally, I’ve saved my ALL-TIME favorite (and why I’m even writing this post) for last…..(drum-roll, please)

Robert Sinskey Vin Gris

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The inspiration for my original  blog and my “AH-HAH” moment with “pink” wine….Robert Sinskey introduced me to the wonderful world of roséin 2004 and I have been a loyal fan ever since.

Dry, minerally, delicious…easy to drink on its own but absolutely wonderful with a variety of foods, this wine is EASY. Easy to drink, easy to love.

Maybe not so easy to get….

The winery is a delight. They make some other simply outstanding wines (Abraxas!). Check out Robert Sinskey and all their wonderfulness HERE

Sooo, that’s my rosé list. For the time-being, at least. I have more rosé’s to discover this season and will surely share them with you here.

But take this with you….

Rosé does NOT suck.

But PLEASE let me know if you try any of these and what your thoughts are.

Wines are meant to be shared and shared often.

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Wishing you a very pink weekend coming up….Ciao for now!

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