Rosé is the New Black! My Picks for Summer!
In the spirit of Asimov's New York Times article on rosé today, I thought I would tell you about my top five rosé picks for the warm, summer days ahead!
Before I do, though, I'll explain a bit about the three major ways a rosé wine can be made: saignée (literally, "bleeding"), traditional (skin contact), and blending.
The saignée method is often used when a winemaker is actually making a red wine, but "bleeds" off a portion of the juice after only a couple of days. This is usually done when the winemaker wants to achieve high levels of tannic acid and intense color in the finished product. Since red wine derives its color from being in contact with the skins, this first run-off juice is going to be pink, not red, yet. It is fermented separately as rosé. The remaining wine in the original fermenter goes on to become red wine.
In the second scenario, the winemaker is most likely using red grapes uniquely designated for rosé production. The grapes are crushed and the skins remain in contact with the juice for a couple of days. Then, the grapes are (usually) pressed and removed (unlike red wine, where the skins stay throughout the entire fermentation process).
There is some disagreement as to whether skin contact or saignée method makes the best rosés, but it is widely agreed that the third way of production: blending red and white to get rosé or blush doesn't produce the best examples!
When do you drink a rosé? Anytime and with nearly anything! This style of wine should always be consumed fresh and young, with a nice chill (or ice cold, if you wish). They are perfect partners with anything on the grill and great with all the fresh produce out in the markets right now! They make great crossover wines (for you red wine drinkers who don't drink much white and vice versa). And for those of you who still think that all pink wine is sweet or for sissies or the unrefined palate need to get with the program! The majority of rosé production in the world is DRY. The best ones strike an effortless balance between fresh acidity and structure, fruit and minerality.
Now on to my picks for the summer:
5. Mulderbosch Cabernet Sauvignon, Stellenbosch, South Africa - This wine comes from one of my favorite South African winemakers, Mike Dobrovic. Beautiful pomegranate color, aromas of strawberries and cherries, slightly peppery. This would be phenom with ahi tuna steak with fresh sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper!
4. Domaine Houchart Cotes de Provence Rosé, France - This domaine is part of the Quiot family (famed Rhone producers) and has been producing wine in Provence for 5 generations! This rosé is a blend of mostly grenache, cinsault, and syrah. It is salmon-pink, with raspberries and citrus fruit on the nose. This is a wine to drink at lunch (with quiche!)...or anytime, really!
3. Masciarelli Rosé d'Abruzzo , Italy - I am crazy in love with this wine - especially for it's quality-to-price ratio! 100% montepulciano, brilliant mauve color, explodes with juicy dark berries and rose both on the nose and the palate. Incredibly smart little number from a winery that shows consistent quality year after year (I mean, who doesn't love the flagship Masciarelli Montepulciano d'Abruzzo? Go try it by the glass at Cucina 24 if you're in Asheville). Get a solid chill on this rosé and drink all summer long!!
2. Villa Wolf Pinot Noir Rosé, Pfalz, Germany - I love the elegance and clean, lean lines of this wine made by Dr Loosen's second estate, J.L. Wolf. The cool climate contributes to the bright acid and liveliness, the traditional saignée method accounts for the pretty pink color! Don't cover up this wine with too much flavor intensity. Opt for salads, shellfish or local mountain trout with pink peppercorns...mmm ;)
1. Domaine de la Berthete "Sensation" Cotes du Rhone Rosé, France - cinsault, grenache, carignan and syrah - peaches and berries...reminds me of the smell of a fresh cobbler! The most amazing texture and mouthfeel: creamy, with whispers of cool acidity. This is rosé to drink on your porch on a warm evening with a light meal: try a grilled romaine heart with nutty parm reggiano or roasted rosemary-thyme chicken and potatoes...in fact, i know this would be great with one of my favorite stand-by recipes from epicurious: pork tenderloin with maple and sage http://tinyurl.com/nk9lur. Don't get me wrong, this wine is great by itself, too, I just love when wine inspires me to eat something yummy!
Honorable Mentions: Les Jamelles Cinsault Rosé, Gran Sarao Cava Rosado, Mercedes Eguren Cabernet Rosado
All of these wines are for sale at Hops & Vines in West Asheville. However, if you know of another place selling/serving any of the above, just leave a comment telling us where to find it!
Content Source: jessicagualano.blogspot.com/
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