|\A French and a Spanish Rose Wine Credit: Bill Rockwell|
Today, Saturday, June 11, is National Rosé Day. To help celebrate this often tasty and refreshing wine, it might be a good idea to pick up a bottle of two for your drinking pelasure.
To debunk some of the popular misconceptions about this often overlooked genre (as opposed to the popular whites and red categories), rosés need not be sweet like many of the pink Zinfandels and blush wines sold on the market. The ones especially from Provence, the Rhone and the Loire Valley of France are dry, fresh and acidic and devoid of a sugary overload.
Many wine-growing regions in US produce rosés, some quite dry, others not so much. Rosé is also made in many other countries and, as a result, has several different names. In Spain it’s called “Rosado,” in Italy, “Rosato.” But there are also excellent rosés coming from South America (Chile, Uruguay), Germany, Australia and South Africa.
Recently, the alcohol levels have increased too. Lighter styled rosés are around 12% to 13% alcohol. But many now have anywhere from 13.5% to 14% alcohol, which is right up there with a Cabernet Sauvignon.
Speaking of Cabernet, many rosés are made from the Cabernet grape as well as from Merlot, Pinot Noir, Gamay, Zinfandel and Syrah. If fact, any red wine grape can be used to produce a rosé.
Here are a couple of rosés I recently enjoyed. Both are dry but full-bodied and flavorful and perfect for a picnic, sipping on the deck, patio or porch in the evening or with pork, fish and chicken and vegetarian dinners.
2015 Rioja Bordon Rosé. Made from Tempranillo and Viura grapes, this Spanish Rosado (rosé) has a light pink hue with orange overtones and soft citrus/raspberry/floral notes with a lot of staying power on the palate. Alcohol is 13% by volume and is best served at 45 to 50-degrees F. Price $11.99
2015 La Chasse Prestige Cotes-du-Rhone Rosé is drier than the Rioja Bordon, but still elegant, and refreshing. Made by one of the Rhone Valley's top producers, Gabriel Meffre, this rosé is made from Shiraz/Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre and Cinsault grapes and is lightly fruity and citrusy with a touch of spice and comes with a screw cap for easy opening. Alcohol is 13% by volume. Price around $15.