Friday, May 10, 2013

Time for Rosé

For the second year in a row, we served a rosé all winter long.  We started pouring the De La Chevaliere rosé last fall, and continued until early this spring.  It is a French syrah/grenache blend from Languedoc.  It was very well received, and I think we probably went through three or four cases - which, when you consider we serve about a case of chardonnay every week, is not all that much, but for a rosé to sell that well, and in the winter, is pretty good by my book. 

After the Chevaliere we had the King Estate Acrobat rosé of Pinot Noir, which spent some time on our wine list this past summer.  It was still the 2011 vintage, but no loss of fruit could be found, although I would look forward to the new crop this year.  

Currently we are pouring another French example - Chateau Guiot 80/20 blend of grenache and syrah, from the Costières de Nîmes appellation.  This wine is a little darker pink than the others, and has lots of crisp fruit and a long finish.  It's one of those rosés that can easily convince a "I don't drink pink" person to change their mind.  Actually, most of these rosés will do that, since not one of them is like the sweet, "blush" wine that so many Americans associate with rosé. 

On deck for by-the-glass consumption is the Hecht & Bannier 2012 rosé, which I've been trying to get for several weeks now.  It finally came into Southern's warehouse and I am going to try it (for you) tonight.  We had the H&B Minervois on the wine list for quite some time, and it was one of the top favorites of our red wine drinking clientele, so when I read about their Languedoc rosé, I was determined to try it.  It is a grenache, cinsault and syrah blend, a classic grouping for French rosés.  

For the by-the-bottle I have a wine by M. Chapoutier, the Bila Haut rosé, again a Rhone from the Languedoc...I sense a pattern here...which is again a grenache and cinsault blend.

However, the one I am most excited about will not be here for another three weeks or so, coming in from Bacchus.  I've been bugging Pat about it for a month or more, because it was such a spectacular wine last year.  The 2012 Blackbird Vineyards Arriviste rosé from California's Napa valley is finally in the pipeline and I have ordered several cases.  This is a blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon and cabernet franc, and hopefully will be same powerful-yet-pink wine we so appreciated last summer.

I really do enjoy rosé wine; actually I would say it is my favorite style - dry but fruity, crisp and full bodied.  Rosés are easy with food as well, getting along with just about anything.  It has been very satisfying to see these wines become more and more popular with the general wine drinking public over the past 8 or 10 years. And, we like to sip on a well rounded glass of rosé all year long, not just the steamy summer months.  That being said, those hot weather evenings on the patio are the perfect time for the chilling refreshment that a good, dry rosé has to offer.


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