Guest post by Victoria Ferguson
Photo via Nadia & Massimo
Pink wine—quick, what’s your first thought?
Rosés face a stigma in the USA: people often assume they are sweet. They might be pink, but most Rosé [pronounced “rho-zay”] is dry and fruity - not sweet. Don’t let your brain trick you into believing fruity and sweet are the same; plenty of dry red wines are fruity.
So what exactly is a Rosé? It is a pinkish wine produced differently than red wine but with the same grapes, Wine Folly sums it up quite nicely. Sometimes a Rosé has white wine blended in, but the majority are produced solely from red grapes, such as Pinot Noir, Syrah, Grenache, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and the list goes on.
When it comes to Rosé and food, go ahead and feel free to experiment with different pairings—it nicely complements many dishes such as grilled seafood, a cheese plate, pasta with cream sauce, and even simple things like hot dogs or burgers. Rosés aren’t terribly complicated wines, so don’t worry about complicated dishes to pair them with.
As we continue through this season’s heat, now is the perfect time to sip what Bon Appétit calls “summer’s most refreshing wine.” Just note that if you do want to drink your Rosés past the summer months, try to do so within a year of when they are released. Otherwise their fruitiness will fade, and while many are still drinkable the next year, they aren’t as tasty. Drink on…there are many delicious Rosés out there to sample!
Here are some of my favorites.
NV Jean-Baptiste Adam Cremant d ’Alsace Rosé, Alsace, France; Pinot Noir $20
This is a Cremant (sparkling wine) from a winery that has been in the Jean-Baptiste Adams family since the year 1614. It is also organic and biodynamic.
2012 Puech-Haut Prestige Rosé, Saint-Drézéry, Languedoc Roussillon, France; Grenache, Cinsault $21
This wine has a glass top, but that has nothing to do with the delicious, pale salmon-colored wine that is wonderfully well-balanced.
2012 Proprieta Sperino Rosa del Rosa, Piedmonte, Italy; Nebbiolo, Vespolina $18 Nebbiolo is the same grape used to make Italy’s famous (expensive) red wine Barolo.
2012 Robert Sinskey Vin Gris of Pinot Noir, Carneros, California $29
This is a delicious Pinot Noir from a biodynamic winery that consistently produces top-notch, well-balanced wines. A splurge, but worth it!
2013 Maipe Rosé of Malbec, Mendoza, Argentina $10
You read that vintage correct; remember that the Southern Hemisphere swaps seasons with us and that they’ve already harvested the 2013 grapes. Rosé of Malbec—need I say more?
Prices are approximate.
Victoria Ferguson is the Deputy Director at the Washington Wine Academy, a local non-profit that teaches wine, beer, and spirits classes, as well as professional wine certifications. The Washington Wine Academy also owns the Crystal City Wine Shop, where all of the recommended wines can be ordered. You can follow the Washington Wine Academy on Facebook or on Twitter via @wineacademy.