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In Anticipation of a Sunny Summer, A Rosé Roundup
By Jessica Dupuy
Apr 12, 2016
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As spring struggles to push sunny days through in many parts of the country, there’s no denying its vibrant presence in the release of 2015 Rosé wines.  Rosé is commonly associated with France, particularly the Provence region in Southern France, which is largely devoted to the production of Rosé.  But while there are countless examples of excellent and affordable Provençal Rosés, it’s worth noting that this style of wine is expertly made all over the world.

Often brimming with bright red fruits balanced with crisp citrus acidity, it’s the perfect style of wine to bridge the gap between red wine and white wine lovers alike--especially in warmer climates.  As the spring season evolves to summer, these are a few favorites from the New World, the Old World, and even the Really Old World--with a selection from Israel.

France:

2015 Bieler Père et Fils (Provence ) Coteaux d'Aix‑en‑Provence Rosé "Sabine” ($13)
Everything about this quintessential Provencal Rosé says "springtime!"  A happy blend of rich wild strawberry, cherry, and pomegranate dance in the glass with savory sun-dried herbs.  This crisp, refreshing blend of 40% Grenache, 25% Syrah, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Cinsault and 3% Rolle offers a supple roundness of texture on the finish.  A definite palate pleaser for the months to come.  96

2014 E. Guigal (Rhône Valley) Côtes du Rhône Rosé ($12)
Just beyond Provence, the Rhône Valley puts out some pretty powerful competition in the rosé category and famed winery E. Guigal consistently reveals a refreshing expression of the region.  The 2014 Rosé is delicious and delicate, with a mélange of fresh summer strawberries, raspberries and cherry that elegantly funnels into a lingering mineral-driven finish.  A blend of Grenache, Cinsault and Syrah, this pretty pale pink number is a perfect partner for outdoor picnics.  95

2015 Mouton Cadet (Bordeaux) Rosé ($12)
This Bordeaux showstopper is a blend of traditional varieties including 53% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, and 27% Cabernet Sauvignon. A rich hue of blush, this lovely wine offers notes of red currant, raspberry and ruby red grapefruit with a touch of faint sage at the end.  Supple fruit on the palate is followed with bright kiss of fleshy lemon and a lingering finish.  This vibrantly fruity rosé would pair well with lighter fare such as grilled salmon with pearl tomato, feta and pearl couscous salad.  93

Lucien Albrecht (Alsace) Crémant d’Alsace Brut Rosé NV ($21)
A stunning expression of the sunny slopes in Alsace.  This sparkling rosé is made from 100% Pinot Noir using whole clusters in the methode traditionale.  While aromas of strawberry rhubarb pie with a toasty butter crust greet the nose, the palate adds more tart characteristics of fresh raspberry and lemon zest.  92


Spain:

Hacienda de Arínzano (D.O. Pago di Arínzano) Rosé 2015 ($19)
The deeply blush-colored wine is from the first winery in Northeast Spain to receive the prestigious Pago designation due to its unique landscape and climate.  This rosé is made from 100% Tempranillo and offers intense aromas of strawberry, pink grapefruit and white pepper laced with a hint of rose petal.  An excellent wine for a juicy grilled burger.  93


Anna de Codorníu (Catalonia) Cava Brut Rosé ($14)
The only thing more fun than pink wine is pink with with bubbles. Especially this elegant Brut Rosé from Codorníu.  Notes of crushed red berries intermingle with underlying minerality and a delicate mid-palate with crisp, fresh powdery berry flavors on to the finish.  An excellent aperitif for the patio.  92


Portugal:

Vinha da Defesa (Alentejo) Rosé 2014 ($10)
For those who love a darker shade of pink, this opulent Portuguese blend of Aragonês (Tempranillo) and Syrah comes from the Alentejo region and offers a deeply structured alternative to the light and delicate vin gris styles of Southern France.  Macerated cherries dominate the nose and palate framed by fresh spring herbs of mint and basil.  94
 

Italy:

Ferrari (Trentino) Rosé Brut NV ($30)
The only thing more fun than pink wine is pink with with bubbles. Especially this elegant Brut Rosé from Ferrari.  Established over a century ago in Italy’s mountainous northern region of Trentino, Ferrari was recently named Wine Enthusiast’s “2015 Best European Winery.”  This wine is produced in the traditional method and undergoes more than two years of bottle aging on the lees.  Made from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, this wine is crisp and bright with notes of wild strawberry and raspberry cream and elegantly balances acidity and sweetness with a refreshing finish.  93

2014 Bertani (Veneto) Bertarose Rosé ($20)
It’s been referred to as the “Rosé of Kings.”  Perhaps because this particular bottling from Veneto is from one of the northern Italy’s most iconic and historic producers in the past 150 years, and bares the royal seal of the Savoia family.  Aromas of cherry and rose petal erupt from the glass with a faint whiff of spice.  The texture and feel is bone dry, racy, and with a little more spice coming through along with a toasted nut character.  94

2014 Villa Gemma Masciarelli (Abruzzo) Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo ($14)
This complex and cherry pink rosé is a heftier style than your average rosé, but a welcome addition to the mix.  Made from 100 percent Montepulciano d’Abruzzo grapes and presents with an intense cherry pink color and a fragrant floral bouquet etched with rich pomegranate and fresh thyme.  A sublime accompaniment to a pizza al fresco95


Israel:

Galil Mountain (Upper Galilee) Rosé 2014 ($14)
This is historic region offers some beautiful rare finds and this unique blend is no exception.  Showing refreshing acidity and notes of red fruit and rose petals on the palate, this wine is sourced from vineyards in Israel’s Upper Galilee.  Hand-harvested Sangiovese is processed as a “white wine” and later blended with Pinot Noir and Grenache produced in the saignée method.  An exceptional conversation starter for any summer get together.  93


California:

2015 Cenyth (Sonoma County) Rosé ($23)
A lovely California wine made from hands of French ancestry.  Hélène Seillan has taken the reigns from father and mentor, renowned French winemaker Pierre Seillan to produce Cenyth.  This wine is made from 100% Cabernet Franc picked from estate vineyards in Chalk Hill.  Mirroring traditional rosé production in Champagne, the grapes were fermented at low temperatures in stainless steel tanks.  Offering all of the best elements Cabernet Franc brings to the table, namely rich red and dark fruit and savory herbaceousness.  Enjoy with flank steak and roasted red peppers.  95


Oregon:

2015 Stoller Family Estate (Dundee Hills) Pinot Noir Rosé ($22)
A consistent favorite from the Dundee Hills AVA. This rosé of Pinot Noir captures the essences of summer in the bottle with notes of watermelon and sweet rose petals swimming with jasmine breezes and offering a touch of tropical fruit on the palate.  Bone dry, but rich with fruit, this wine has vibrant acidity and a racy finish.  96

2015 Elouan (Oregon) Rosé ($21)
The first rosé release under the Elouan label from former California wine maker Joseph Wagner, this wine blends the best what three of Oregon’s top wine regions--Umpqua, Willamette, and Rogue Valleys--to offer a wine with bright acidity, suppleness, and rounded fruit.  Aromas of raspberry and strawberry follow through on the palate with hints of lemon zest and dried stone fruit.  A lovely accompaniment for antipasti on the terrace.  94