Actually, three rosés walked into our home, courtesy of visiting friends and our local wine shop. VinoDuo had Lisa’s current fave on hand– a 100% Sangiovese rosato from Tuscany while our friends generously brought two bottles from Provence. And just like that, we had the makings of a fun summer tasting. Provence is, of course, the champion marketer of rosé wines, with bottles from pale salmon to amber bursting out of wine shop shelves. Italy, not so much. But Lisa discovered the 2015 Il Poggione Brancato Rosato di Toscana a few years back and has restocked the wine fridge many times since. Following are our tasting notes and recommendations.
Jean-Luc Colombo 2015 Cape Bleue Rosé, Vin de Pays de la Mediterranee, Provence $12/bottle
Two thirds Syrah and one-third Mourvèdre, this dry wine boasts a lovely amber color and a nice peachy nose. It’s a mighty simple concoction, best sipped by the pool or on the patio, not paying too much attention to the flavors, which are lightly fruity and a bit spicy. Good in a pinch, but don’t run out to buy it. Unless you’re traveling to Marseilles, in which case, pick up a bottle, sit by the harbor, and enjoy.
Chateau Saint-Pierre 2017 Rosé Cotes de Provence $14/bottle
Anything that comes in such a sexy bottle, in the tradition of côtes de provence, with a pale salmon color and crisp dry taste is ok in our book. Made with 60% Cinsault and 40% Grenache, this provencal offering was fuller, fresher, and tastier than the Cape Bleue rosé. Pronounced peach flavors with a long finish. Tastes like a more expensive wine and would be welcome on our table any time someone wants to bring it to us.
Il Poggione Brancato Rosato di Toscana 2016, Montalcino $19/bottle; 2016 very tough to find; 2017 has good buzz
The reigning champion keeps its crown…the Brancato Rosato was a universal crowd pleaser. As Lisa wrote in April 2017, this stylish, serious wine is “juicy, brightly acidic, cherry and strawberry aromas and a salmon-y color.” While sipping it by the pool is a very fine option, don’t mistake this wine for a lightweight…it pairs beautifully with fish, pasta, even dessert. Don’t let this summer slip away without trying this Sangiovese stunner.