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Days of Wine and Rosés

Summertime and the livin’ is easy…..

Summer’s coming and it’s time for a Rosé revival. Dry rosé is one of the most versatile of all wines.  Well chilled, on a warm summer’s day, they go surprisingly well with just about any food and they look so good in the glass.  These are not wines to contemplate over but are meant to be gulped and enjoyed without much thought.  Rosé has all the refreshing qualities of white wine such as crisp, zippy acidity, mixed with the delicious red berry flavors of red wine. It is made from many different grape varietals in many different regions, the most popular being Southern France, Spain and California, as well as South Africa, Australia, and Italy.  A summer staple, this is a wine to take your mind off of the stifling heat!

Rosé is a wine that goes through the red winemaking process.  The grapes are pressed and the juice sits with the skins, but just for a little while, just enough time to get a little bit of color. After the juice is separated from the skins fermentation continues like white wine, most often, in stainless steel tanks although there are some rosés that are put into oak barrels for a short time. 

Rosés are typically ready to drink young and fresh, so look for recent vintages. Pairs great  with summer foods like BBQ, grilled sausages, coleslaw, all types of salads, crab cakes, pizza and more.


SoloRosa  2005 ($14.99)  California  88 Robert Parker
 Ripe cherry and raspberry flavors.  The acidity is absolutely mouth-watering with a flinty, mineral core that lingers in your mouth.  This is aged for 5 months in French oak. Fantastic with just about anything especially the spinach-strawberry salad (in the recipe section) and crabcakes.  What a summer meal!  One of my favorites!!  50% Sangiovese and 50% Merlot.

Vin Gris de Cigare  2004 Bonny Doon Vineyards, California  ($11.99)  90WE
Lively and easy to drink.  A blend of Grenache and Mourvèdre, this has fresh raspberries, some spice and vanilla. I had is in an Indian restaurant with spicy food and it was wonderful. A real gulper!

Belle Glos 2004 Pinot Noir Blanc Casa Torres Vineyard, California ($21.99)
A seductive, voluptuous pink wine (a bit pricey too).The pink wax dip on the top of the bottle really catches your eye, especially the ladies. The aromas of earth and  ripe red berries  doesn’t  prepare you for  the rush of bright, rich, almost creamy berry flavors that linger in your mouth after you swallow. Great mouth-watering acidity keeps you coming back for more! This is made from 100% pinot noir grapes.  A real beauty

Chateau Grand Cassagne 2005 Costières di Nimes, Southern France ($8.99)
A blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvèdre. Clean and crisp with ripe fruit aromas and flavors of strawberries, raspberries, and candy apple.  A definite summer staple.

Chateau Guiot 2005 Costières de Nimes, Southern France  ($9.99)
A grenache, and syrah blend. This beautifully scented wine from the Languedoc-Roussillon region along the Mediterranean offers up spicy, rich berry flavors.
Mas Carlot Cuvée Tradition 2005  Costières de Nimes France ($8.99)
A very light rosé with flavors of sweet, ripe red fruit, and maybe a touch of black pepper, and a hint of minerality.  This is well balanced and surprisingly complex for a rosé wine.  A blend of syrah and grenache.  Enjoy!

Red Bicyclette  French Rosé  2004  ($7.99)
Light and crisp with flavors of watermelon and red berries.  A great gulper on a hot summer day. 

Domaine Longval   2004  Tavel  France ($10.99)
Tavel is the kind of wine you fall in love with on some warm summer night while on vacation.  Despite its pretty pink color most Tavels are rugged wines with robust, spicy, berry flavors.  These wines are bone dry with an edge that makes them perfect for washing down dishes laden with garlic, olive oil, and fresh, wild herbs.  After all these wines come from the southern Rhône near Chateauneuf-du-Pape in France.  Nine Rhône grapes can be used to make these lovely rosés but the leader is generally grenache. Domaine Longval is a typical Tavel with flavors and aromas of ripe summer fruit and a core of minerality.  Drink it young and chilled so that the exuberant flavors will explode in your mouth.

Mas de la Dame   Rosé du Mas  2004 ($11.99)
The most popular Provencal wines are zesty, refreshing rosés.  To sit on the beach in St. Tropez with a bottle of chilled rosé is a little bit of heaven.  This sensational rosé, from the centuries-old Mas de la Dame (farm of the woman) is one you could drink all summer long.  Of course, this wine would be great with the spicy garlic and olive oil infused foods of Provence or anywhere else on the Mediterranean.  If you’ve been to the south of France and need a  quick reminder of the food, the wine, and the sun, pick up a bottle and relax!

L’Estandon  Côtes de Provence  2004  ($8.99)
Another dry rosé from Provence, this one is from an appellation that makes some excellent rosé wines. This is a vibrant, beautifully colored rosé full of earthy, strawberry flavors. A little bit of heaven in a bottle!

Condesa de Leganza Tempranillo Rosé  2005  Spain  ($7.99)
This wine is made from 100% Tempranillo grapes.  A rich, vibrant wine with an intense nose of red berry fruit and spice leading into flavors of cherries, strawberries, and raspberries.  There is a hint of caramel and licorice with a kind of smoky finish.  The lively acidity will make this great with food.

Marques de Cáceres Rosé 2004  Rioja  Spain ($7.99)
Crisp, dry, full of fruit yet still light on the palate.  A great summer gulper on the beach or by the pool. 

Goats do Roam Rosé 2004  South Africa  ($8.99)
This is a fantastic rosé from South Africa.  Fresh and crisp with flavors of watermelon and cherry that linger a bit on the finish.  Made from Shiraz, Pinotage, Cinsault, Grenache, and Merlot.

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