Many people incorrectly assume that warm weather wines must whites and only be whites, but, warm weather wines come in all colors and flavors, including a perennial favorite, Rosé.
You can’t go wrong with Rosé. Often made from high-acid, mineral-driven grapes, they tend to go well with summer-fresh produce and are great to drink with or while you’re waiting for your food to arrive. Another plus for Rosé is it makes a good transition into fall’s cooler climate and pairs beautifully with root vegetables.
There are many beautiful dry and crisp Rosés, the best known seem to come from Provence in Southern France. One regional favorite has recently undergone a name change by the new winery owners. Not only has this wine changed names, it now sports a new bottle shape as well. Once known as Château Miraval Pink Floyd because the legendary rock group Pink Floyd recorded a portion of their famed 1979 album The Wall at Miraval’s private recording studio.
New owners, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, took care of the old vines, terraced vineyards, and organic farming that form the basis for the salmon-hued Château Miraval, Cotes de Provence Rosé “Pitt & Jolie”, 2012. This refined and elegant full-bodied Rosé is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah, offering pure flavors of dried red berry, red cherry, honeydew and tangerine, with a focused finish layered with flint and spice notes. (Around $20)
Another delicious Rosé from Provence is Chateau Beaulieu Coteaux d’Aix-En-Provence Rose 2012. Situated in the town of Rognes, Chateau Beaulieu’s 494-acre vineyard lies in the heart of on old volcanic crater at an altitude of 1300 feet. This wine is a blend of 50% Grenache, 20% Cinsault, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Syrah. Each grape variety is vinified separately in stainless steel tanks to preserve its natural character and is aged two to three months before blending.
Chateau Beaulieu offers a subtle, yet expressive bouquet of red currants, wild strawberry with notes of juicy ripe peaches and pear. The crisp fruit flavors echo the nose. This is a balanced, elegant wine excellent as an aperitif and pairing with grilled fish, crustaceans, and fruit-based desserts. Serve slightly chilled. ( Around $12)
Don't forget to check out Spanish Rosé. One current favorite is: Dinastia Vivanco Rioja Rosado 2012 from Rioja, Spain, 2012. This Rioja pink offers a great value and can be found under $12 in most shops. A blend of 85% Tempranillo and 15% Garnacha, this wine offers aromas of strawberry, raspberry, cherry, rose petals and a very slight hint of licorice. The flavors of this fresh wine follow suit, there is a balance of red berry fruit, acidity, alcohol and a very generous finish. This wine makes a match for white meat (chicken and pork), vegetables, pasta and a variety of cold cuts.
To bring out their soft fruitiness, try chilling them for about 20 minutes before serving.
There you have it —three delicious finds to take us from summer’s heat to the beginning of fall.