FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Rosé: A Wine for All Seasons

by Eunice Fried

Mar 1, 2018
Magazine

ONCE, ROSÉ WAS A WINE to sip in summer and to put away when the calendar flipped to fall. No longer. As wine retailers and sommeliers discovered, there are sizable requests for rosé all year ʼround, and for good reason. A well-made, dry rosé may be the ultimate pairing wine, one that comfortably accompanies the widest range of dishes — almost any dish, in fact, other than heavy, dark meat courses. Another reason for its popularity: It is simply delicious.

Despite a general belief rosé is a blend of red and white wines, true rosé is made solely from red grapes. The winemaker begins by fermenting the juice, skins and pips of red grapes. When the juice has reached the desired pink shade and before it continues to become a full red wine, the winemaker removes the skins, which give red wine its final color. Fermentation continues without the skins, and the color remains a shade of rosé.

That shade can vary from salmon to coral to pink and other interesting variations. So can the taste, as I discovered in a range of especially flavorful rosés.

Domaine Houchart Sainte Victoire Côtes de Provence 2016 ($18), a well-balanced blend of four grapes, presents a pretty pink-coral shade, has a light-medium body and offers an intensely fruity aroma and long finish. This crisp, rather spicy French rosé is a mouth-filling wine.

Made totally of Pinot Noir in France’s Loire Valley, Fournier Père & Fils Sancerre Les Belles Vignes 2016 ($28) is a particularly flavorful, elegant, crisp and citrusy salmon pink-shaded rosé, a bright wine with a deep-flavored nose.

Presqu’ile Pinot Noir Rosé 2015 ($22), from California’s Santa Maria Valley and made 100 percent from Pinot Noir, proves a rich and fruity vibrant wine with a zesty acidity and depth. It brims with hints of ripe strawberry and raspberry.

Decoy Rosé 2016 ($20), an aromatic, salmon-shaded wine from California made with a snappy, well-balanced blend of Pinot Noir and Syrah, imparts a relatively light body with a sprightly acidity and a rich display of floral and strawberry accents in the nose.

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