It's a very happy Wine Wednesday in the world of Kate Uncorked. Why?! Rosé season is finally here and I.AM.JAZZED! I'm sure you've seen it popping up in your local wine stores or grocery stores and if you haven't picked up a bottle yet it's time to do so! It's no secret that Rosé is the hottest Spring/Summer beverage on the market these days- and for good reason. When you get your hands on a good bottle, of which there are many, it's crisp, dry, refreshing, easy drinking and, let's be honest, it's just really pretty. A lot of people associate Rosé with being sweet. A lot of people also have bad memories of a certain 'blush' box wine (not judging). If you fall into either of these categories, I implore you to pick of one of the following bottles and reconsider your stance on Rosé.
Before we dive into my top three picks under $20, let's briefly touch on the popular question- 'what is Rosé?' If you feel silly for not knowing, don't! It's a legitimate, common and important question. Rosé wines are all made from red grape varieties and there are actually several different methods of making still Rosé wines, however, the most common method is called 'limited maceration.' You might recall when we talked about winemaking several months ago that red wines get their color from contact with their skins. Well, Rosés are not dissimilar in that the skins are left in contact with the juice, but only until the juice reaches its desired shade of pink. After this, the juice is transferred to another vessel to finish the fermentation process. Boom, Rosé.
Onto the tasting portion of this post. I always gravitate toward a French Rosé and they tend to be a bit more expensive than the others, however, they also tend to carry all the yummy characteristics that I'm looking for in pink wine. To that point, the French are not by any means the only people producing excellent Rosé, stay tuned for future posts about that! I have found three fantastic French Rosés for under $20 that are sure to turn any Rosé hater into a Rosé lover, or at the very least, a Rosé supporter. Repeat after me, YES WAY ROSÉ!
All three of these wines share similar characteristics that you would see in a typical Rosé from France. Hints of strawberry and bright fruit on the palate with crisp acidity and fresh minerality. They would be great with a juicy grilled burger (I would personally top mine with blue cheese, caramelized onions and a perfectly ripe slice of tomato). I would also pair these with some sort of fish cake like salmon or crab. I chose to enjoy the Domaine du Dragon with some grilled red snapper, a salad of arugula, goat cheese and strawberries and some roasted brussel sprouts. If you're someone who likes to class up a casual summer lunch with glass of Rosé, which I am, make yourself a badass BLT (maybe throw some avocado on there, maybe add a side of sweet potato fries) and get your sip on.
*In order from left to right
2014 Domaine du Dragon Grande Cuvée - $14.95 at The Yellow Umbrella
2014 J. Mourat Fiefs Vendeens Rosé - $14.95 at Barrel Thief
2014 Chateau les Valentines Rosé - $19.99 at Ellwood Thompson