Friday, July 15, 2011

Things Are Looking Rosé-y for Summer Wines

 Strawberries, cherries and an angel’s kiss in spring
My summer wine is really made from all those things.

--Nancy Sinatra Lyrics to Summer Wine

White wine is my poison.  It doesn’t really matter which varietal but the wild white – Sauvignon Blanc – is my absolute favorite. 

But mid-way through my vacation, I had exhausted myself on Sauvignon Blanc and Champagne, and I wasn’t crazy about any of the Chardonnays. I recalled that my good friends – Rachel and Tracy – both wine connoisseurs – had recently taken to Rosé  wines.

Now I’m not talking about Reunite White Zin which may have been a starter wine for some of us – especially if yous from Jersey.  As opposed to the overly sweet and inexpensive Rosé, the grown up version is one of the most versatile, food-friendly wines around.

So I ordered a glass of Rosé with my lunch one day.  (Hey, there was a strong European influence and I was on vacation, so don’t judge my daytime libations.) I was pleasantly surprised by this summer wine.  It was dry in nature and had a fresh fruit flavor – a hint of strawberry and raspberry. 

After doing some research, I found that Rosé wine hues come from the short contact time that the grape juice has with the grape skin.  They also offer a very good wine value for the money.

Well, I am certainly no wine aficionado -- but I am a wine enthusiast -- so here are some Rosé wine top picks from About.com:

Folonari Pink Pinot Grigio 2005 (Italy) $8
Yes, Pinot Grigio is a white grape, so how the heck is it presented as a Rosé? Italy’s Pinot Grigio grape has dark skin and the fermenting juice is colored by contact with this dark grape skin, producing the lovely pink color.  Fresh floral and fruit aromas are set to greet you upon first impression, followed by a slightly citrus flavor.

Tapena Rosé (Spain) $12
This Rosé from Spain is a delicious blend of Monastrell and Garnacha grapes.  The result is bright pink wine with a tantalizing combination of strawberry, cherry and peach on the palate – great acidity allows for unlimited food pairing combinations.

Montes Cherub Rosé of Syrah 2008 (Chile) $16
The Montes Cherub is always a visually stunning wine.  The color is a magnificent hot pink.  This well-received Rosé from Chile is crafted solely from Syrah grapes, producing a classy, dry rosé with plenty of concentrated red berry fruit and a touch of citrus on the edge.

So the next time you are in the wine store, why don't you try a new summertime favorite. Things will certainly start coming up Rosé-s.

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