Since we are in the midst of Rose season, I must bring you another Rose that is both moderately priced and tastes amazing. Introducing the Domaine de Figueiresse Gris de Gris. It’s predominantly Grenache [Granache peeps holla!] and part Cinsault, a red wine grape whose main purpose is for blending with other grapes. Cinsault [sin SO] is often blended with Grenache to give it a soft, fruity taste that’s also pleasantly aromatic. This wine is yummy and at around $10, it’s real yummy.
I was introduced to this Rosé at a tasting hosted by The Wine Company. There were so many Rosés that I was FORCED to narrow my choices. A good problem to have, but after a while, my pallet was on overload. I’m not ashamed to say that after 9 or 10 Rosé samples, I have a difficult time discerning one that is akin to “ripe strawberry” from one that is simply “strawberry-like”. I could be explaining one of a thousand different Rosés. I don’t want my head to hurt by _thinking_ about wine, dammit!
What I do know is if you are [still] hesitant to creep over to the pink side, this is one for you to test the waters. It is bright, full of fresh strawberry flavor; also, it’s dry, yet quenches that Summer thirst. Again, pink wine is NOT, I repeat NOT the White Zin from the 80s! It’s delicious and super drinkable alone, or even better, it pairs with just about everything.
Where buy now: Byerly’s Wines & Spirits, Minnetonka- $11.99, France 44 – $11.99
Grapes: 67% Syrah, 33% Mourvedre
Region: Marsaille, France
If you’ve been out and about at liquor stores lately, you may be seeing more pink wines adorning the shelves. Don’t be alarmed- tis the season for Rosé. For those who are familiar, you know what I’m saying and are ready to get your pink wine rocks off. For those who cringe in horror at the thought of some Bartles & Jaymes wine cooler-thingy, the White Zin boom of the 80s, or blush wine (just threw up a little in my mouth), I understand your apprehension. But there’s a new breed of Rosés, so you’ll have a whole new world waiting for you. Free your mind, and your ass will follow!
An internet search on the creation of Rosé can make your head spin. So, here is a simplified version: Rosé is created when the skins of red grapes harmonize with the pressed juice for a short period of time (as little as a day or two). The longer the sleepover, the darker the rose. Once the juice is the desired color, the juice (sans skins) are sent to a tank for fermentation. The rest of the process flows like making white wine.
Here are some great reasons to delve into the Rosé world:
*Deliciousness. Pure and simple, they are tasty.
*Affordability. Rosés typically range from $10-$20 making it an affordable libation.
*Food friendly. You can drink Rosé with so much. Pair with a salad and veggies, sip alongside pizza or suck it down with some grilled meats- it all works.
*Universally pleasing (relatively speaking). Say you are out with a friend and they want to drink white wine while you’re in the mood for red. Voila! Order up a Rosé and you will both be happy as a clam.
*Seasonal. As with food, it is typically wise to drink what’s in season, and Spring/Summer is the time I implore you to start experimenting with pink wine.
Rosé (in France) Rosado (in Spain) Rosato (in Italy) is often made from varietals such as Pinot Noir, Garnacha or Sangiovese. If there is a red varietal you like, ask your local store for a Rosé that includes that varietal. If you are a white wine drinker, tell that to your local shop, or simply choose a Rosé that is lighter in color to start.
A great “intro” Rosee for those of you experimenting (or a lovely reminder as to why love Rosé) is the 2011 Cape Bleue from Jean-Luc Colombo. Bright pastel pink in color, I just loved it at first sip. I meant to drink one glass, but pretty soon I was singing praises of how much I love Rosé on Twitter. (Needless to say, my husband didn’t even get a lick of this bottle as I devoured it alongside a plate of sweet potato fries.) This is 67% Syrah, 33% Mourvedre- so, if you already love Syrah or Shiraz, you’ll dig this. That said, the aromas and flavors of rose petals, strawberry, and soft spice blend well to create a dry, yet balanced wine with just the right amount of tartness. Instantly, you’ll be channeling your inner Bridget Bardot or Alain Delon sitting along the French Riviera:
“…Oui, oui, mon petit chou, escargot s’il vous plait”
I don’t even know French but this Rosé has me believing I do.
“…No, no Gerard Depardieu! No oui, oui in première classe!”
If I cannot convince you to start experimenting with Rosés, you may either be a fun-hater or have too much apprehension. If the latter is the case, there is a great Rosé wine tasting event happening at Solo Vino on May 20 from 2-5pm. It’ll set you back a cool $30 but the opportunity to taste more than 130 Rosés is stupid-crazy not to go. Plus, I’ll be there getting my Rosé on. RSVP here: