LesVignes De Bila-Haut Pays D’Oc Rose’ by Michel Chapoutier, could any label sound more French? I would suggest not, could it stand up to some of the best Rose’ wines in the world? While I am sure some would disagree, with little trepidation I would suggest it does. This Grenache based wine from the Roussillon area of Southern France seems simple at first blush, pun intended, but is loaded with subtle flavors that combined with the clean style makes this a perfect choice for a hot weather beverage.
Pouring out a salmon pink color in the glass the nose is a single noted strawberry. Do not be fooled though, while the bouquet is pretty basic the flavor profile is both layered and interesting for those who take the time to savor this wine in the mouth. The open follows the strawberry nose, which is supported by red raspberry, a touch of rock and rose petal, finishing with a spicy edge in the finish that leads me to believe there is some Cinsault blended into the Grenache juice. Light and clean in the mouth, I was surprised at the 13.5% alcohol level. Given that and the tendency to drink quickly in the hot summer weather some may prefer to mix this wine down into a spritzer in order to lower that level while still enjoying the flavor package in the bottle.
While it is widely available the Bila-Haut Rose’ is a fairly limited production run, so if you find it locally or online buy it fast and expect to pay around $12 per bottle. This is not a cheap summer quaffer, this is a well made rose’ wine that will stand on its own with many more expensive summer whites or light reds that people look for to fill their picnic pantry. For a little information about Michel Chapoutier, a discussion of an earlier vintage and some explanation of why there is Braille on the label check out the video. Bottom line there is little to fault and a lot to praise in this bottle for those who like “that pink wine”.