“If you drink enough rosé, it tastes like love”
There is something romantic about sitting on a sun-soaked patio with a beautiful pale pink glass of rosé in hand. It can instantly transform a sour attitude into a smiling face with a few mere sips. It becomes infectious when placed on a restaurant table and spreads instantly to surrounding tables. Pair it with food, or drink it on its own, you really can’t go wrong.
As producers continue to make better rosé and as rosé becomes more readily available to us from around the world, there is an almost overwhelming sea of options. What can at first seem like an endless supply, however, is often not. Some rosés are seasonal meaning the producer only makes a small amount and once they’re sold out, well, they’re gone until the next vintage. Don’t fret friends, there are plenty of producers that make enough rosé to last us well into the summer and beyond! So long after your favorites are gone, hopefully you’ll explore and discover another, and another.
After many, many happy hours spent tasting and exploring some of this years 2019 rosés, I’ve put together some summer drinking options for you to explore.
A.Margaine Brut NV |Champagne, FR
GRAPES | 77% Chardonnay 23% Pinot Noir (14% blanc de noir and 9% (red wine)
TASTING NOTES | Cherry, pastry, almond, chalky minerality and white pepper.
INFO | This wine comes from a region in champagne that is mostly known for pinot noir, but it’s here that Arnaud Margaine creates something truly original from predominately chardonnay with the addition of red wine (pinot noir). Plenty of richness, creaminess and an almost frothy texture that made me want pop another cork!
Scribe. Pétillant Natural 2019 | Sonoma, CA
GRAPES |Pinot noir
TASTING NOTES | Hibiscus, raspberry leaf, pomegranate, bone-dry
INFO | Get in on the Pét-Nat craze and see what “natural” wine is about. Crafted using the ancestral method, this wine is bottled and sealed with a crown cap before primary fermentation is finished and without the addition of secondary yeasts or sugars. Therefore, the second fermentation happens in the bottle. Don’t be alarmed if you see ‘bits’ floating around in the bottle – that’s the good stuff because it’s not fined or filtered! This wine is a true expression of what sparkling pinot noir would taste like with little to no intervention.
Louis de Grenelle, Corail, Brut NV | Saumur, FR
GRAPES | Cabernet Franc
TASTING NOTES | Wild strawberry, raspberry, violet
INFO | Crush this on the patio after work on a sun shining day. A little dosage (sugar mixture) to help balance out the fruit and 12 months on the lees make for a beautiful mouth feel and elegant texture. Coming from Saumur in the center of the Loire region, this is one of the last family-owned sparkling wine producers left in Saumur. If you have the opportunity to visit, the underground cave system under the region is something to see!
Zardetto Extra Brut NV | Veneto, IT
GRAPES |Raboso Veronese
TASTING NOTES | Cherry, red current and
INFO | Zardetto was one of the first producers to introduce prosecco to the world. Perfect for aperitif and also and easy meat and cheese board pairing, this is a great affordable everyday drinking bubbly.
Jansz NV | Tasmania, AUS
GRAPES |75% Pinot Noir 22% Chardonnay
TASTING NOTES | Strawberries & cream, rose petal, brioche
INFO | Tasmania’s cool, maritime climate is much like champagne and is quite capable of producing some expressive wines. This sparkling rosé, as well as the brut, are both a great way to dive headfirst into the region. There is so much future potential for this wine growing region that several Champagne houses have already purchased land of their own on the island. Be in the know about the next cool sparkling region and try a Tasmania wine.
Figuière Méditerranée 2019 | Provence, FR
GRAPES | Grenache, Cinsault, Syrah, Cabernet
TASTING NOTES | White flowers, white peach, nectarine pit,
INFO | I am instantly transported to southern France as soon as I open this bottle. Me, the Mediterranean and this glass of rosé is all I need! For now I’ll have to settle for a glass by the pool with my big floppy hat and giant sunglasses! Bright fruit, lively acidity, crisp and clean. Unlike some of the more seasonal options of rosè, this wine is usually available year-round.
Domaine de la Prébende 2019 | Beaujolais, FR
GRAPES | Gamay
TASTING NOTES | Strawberry, melon, nectarine, orange blossom, jasmine, cream and mineral
INFO | Don’t drink this super duper cold and it will truly explode with florality. Lush texture and rich color, this wine is direct pressed and undergoes full malolactic fermentation. Although, its minerality is present, a hallmark of the winery, the acidity is soft and balanced. I dug this wine, but I’m not surprised because my love for Gamay continues to grow deep roots.
Domaine de Fontsainte Gris de Gris 2019 | Corbières, FR
GRAPES | 90% Grenache Gris, 5% Carignan, 5% Mourvèdre
TASTING NOTES | Orange blossom, wild strawberries, minerality, cream
INFO | A wine that is consistently delicious and ingrained in the history of this region. Even though this family has been making wine since the 17th century they continue to be leaders in advancements in winemaking and grape growing. A pleasure to drink and a go-to crowd pleaser.
Clos la Coutale Rose 2019 | Cahors, FR
GRAPES | Malbec
TASTING NOTES | Cinnamon, red apple tart, pastry and cranberry
INFO | Cahors region in France is known for red wines made from the Malbec grape. At Clos la Coutale Malbec is all that’s on the menu. I guess if it’s not broken, don’t fix it, right? In additional to their red Malbec, they also produce a small amount of rosé. This wine was very interesting and surprising. I don’t usually get such qualities from rosé, but it certainly piqued my interest for something unique in a sea of options that can often be very similar.
Lioco 2019 | Mendocino, CA
GRAPES | Carignan
TASTING NOTES | Rhubarb, grapefruit, crushed seashell, watermelon rind, bright, zesty and ‘beaucoup’ acidity
INFO | This wine is screaming for lox or a seafood salad. Freshness and salinity make it a great pairable food wine. Even though Carignan roots run deepest in Spain as well as Southern France, Carignan is fast becoming a darling of California. Love of sun and desire to yield bright fresh acidity make it perfect for summer rosé.
Scribe. 2019 | Sonoma, CA
GRAPES | Pinot noir
TASTING NOTES | Peach blossom, yuzu, wild strawberry
INFO | I don’t think I’ve had a single wine from this winery that hasn’t impressed me. Founded by 4th generation farmers and brother, this winery is about harmony between land, winemaking and craft. Faithful stewards of the land they continue to make terroir-driven gems that impress from vintage to vintage.
Wölffer Estate ‘Summer in a Bottle’ 2019 | Long Island, NY
GRAPES |Merlot, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Gewürztraminer, Cabernet Franc, Pinot Meunier, Pinot Blanc, Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc
TASTING NOTES | Stone fruits, Underripe strawberry, rose petal,
INFO | If you desire slightly more structure in your rosé, this is a great addition to your rosé rotation. Wölffer makes an array of ciders as well as wines. Actually according to World Population Review, New York State has bumped up to number 3 in terms of domestic state production in 2020! So don’t forget good old New York when shopping for wines.
Hahn 2019 | Monterey County, CA
GRAPES | Pinot Noir
TASTING NOTES | Raspberry, watermelon, melon and bitter orange pith
INFO | Salmon and Hahn rosé. It could also certainly stand up to a little fat or poultry. The Hahn family is a leader in Monterey and a must visit when traveling to wine country.
Villa Wolf 2019 | Pfalz, Germany
GRAPES | Pinot Noir
TASTING NOTES | Watermelon Jolly Ranchers, raspberry, watermelon rind, green apple Runts
INFO | Incredibly aromatic right out of the gate. This fruit forward wine with just a touch of sugar is creaming loud for some honey baked ham! The good news is its usually readily available and for a great price.
Txomin Etxaniz 2019 | Getaria, SP
GRAPES | Hondarrabi Beltza 60% Zuri 40%
TASTING NOTES | Mineral, herbs, rubber, dry
INFO | The Txueka family has been farming in the now D.O. Getariako Txakolina region since 1649. That much practice must certainly be on their side! This wine is less about the fruit and more about the minerality and herbal tones. Try this for a more outside-of-the-box rosé.
Broadbent Vinho Verde 2019 | Vinho Verde, Portugal
GRAPES |Borraçal, Espadeiro, Amaral, Vinhão
TASTING NOTES | Pomegranate, strawberry and citrus. Slight spritz.
INFO | No nonsense here. This wine is dry, fruit driven and has a pleasantly longer finish than I expected. Great for drinking on its own but also can stand up to some grub. Vinho Verde wines are terrific values and totally crushable.
Casal Garcia Vinho Verde 2019 | Vinho Verde, Portugal
GRAPES |Vinhão, Azal Tinto and Borraçal
TASTING NOTES | Ripe strawberry, ripe raspberry, slight spritz, ever so slight bit of residual sugar.
INFO | I’ve included two Vinho Verde rosés in my line up because they’re such incredible values, low in alcohol and just perfect for sipping and drinking with or without food. Casal Garcia sports a little more sugar than the Broadbent but has all the bright fruit and ripeness that I expected.