A Garden of Summer Rosés
When Summer is coming up “Rosés”, then we must take advantage and sip them in. So many varieties, flavors, and smells…how can we try them all in just 13 short summer weeks? Colors that go from a pink salmon to a deep cranberry hue. They just scream fun, flavor, and festivities! Just as a rose can be wild and briery, these summertime Rosés can be just as wild and unique but also offer refreshing elegance alone or with a meal. Perfect for fresh summer salads, ham, rice dishes, spicy foods, mild to medium cheeses, and grilled chicken, pork, seafood and shrimp, or veal.
We have experienced a world of Rosés through our palates and ready to reap the glory upon you of our discoveries. We tried to stay as local as possible finding Rosés you could find and access in the United States and Canada. But also wanted to find a variety of Rosés from around the world to make our selections more diverse. We have visited about half of these wineries so the flavors of the wine also come along with the ambiance of being there. But either way, you won’t go wrong enjoying any of these Rosés with your summer events!
Believe it or not, some of the best Rosés we have tried have come from Northern Michigan where Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir grow beautifully.
Bowers Harbor Vineyards – 2015 Pinot Noir Rosé $22 From the Old Mission Peninsula in Michigan comes a rich, complex, and fruit forward Rosé. 100% Pinot Noir grapes that were hand selected for this expressive wine. Red berry, pomegranate, white pepper and spicy nuances fill our glass. This is a dry wine but with a wonderful balance of fruit sweetness and acidity which gives this Rosé a rich mouth-feel and a long, smooth finish. Drink chilled and pair with light appetizers, summer salads, shrimp, and medium cheeses.
M. Lawrence “Sex” Brut Rosé NV $16 The Leelanau Peninsula lies just west and adjacent to the Old Mission Peninsula in Michigan. And as the crow flies, the L Mawby Vineyards is only a few miles from the previous winery. But “vive la difference” when comparing the two styles of Rosés. Larry Mawby had been creating some fantastic sparkling wines for years and he definitely is the sparkling wine pioneer in Michigan. This is a sparkling Brut Rosé that Larry has lovingly named “Sex”. And it is just about as good! An arousing blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes that have been hand picked, whole cluster pressed, and fermented in stainless steel tanks. Pinkish salmon in hue with aroma’s of strawberry, red berry, and yeasty notes. Flavors of ripe red cherry, strawberry, and clove with a delicate but lengthy finish.
Because of California’s longer growing season, their Rosés tend to be more full bodied and fruity. Try some of these fresh Rosés on for size.
2014 Tablas Creek Rosé – Patelin de Tablas $28
Predominately Grenache with the remaining blended with Mourvedre, Counoise, and Syrah. The grapes here were sourced from limestone rich areas of Paso Robles, direct pressed into stainless steel tanks with minimal skin contact. Flavors of generous red fruit from the Grenache with spiced citrus and a long, vibrant finish. Drink chilled up through 2019.
2014 Bouchaine Rosé of Syrah Rockin H Vnyrd $23
A wonderful, crisp style Rosé with flavors of strawberry, citrus, and watermelon. Great balance between fruit and acidity. A perfect warm weather wine that pairs perfectly with summer salads, pork, lemon-herbed chicken, medium cheeses, or a pasta with white sauce. Definitely a wine to ring in Summer and all the amazing events that go with it!
Mumm Napa Brut Sparkling Rose (NV) $20
A fun, flavorful, and festive sparkling Rosé that is mostly Pinot Noir but with a small amount of Chardonnay added in. Wine Spectator awarded this sparkling Rosé 90 Pts and I must agree wholeheartedly. Fresh and a bit sassy, entices with aromas of strawberry, yeast, and spice. Flavors abound with ripe black cherry, apple, vanilla, and a soft, fruity finish. Pairs well with lighter fare but always is the life of the party on its own!
Finding great wines in more obscure places is like finding the diamond in the rough….the needle in the haystack…the matching sock in the dryer! Just west of St Louis, Missouri lies a real gem in Augusta when it comes to finding wonderful, food friendly wines.
Augusta Winery La Fleur Sauvage Rosé (NV) $12
We discovered Augusta Winery about 20 years ago and we continue to visit each year and restock our cellar with their wines. I always look forward to trying Augusta’s La Fleur Sauvage Rosé and have never been disappointed. This is a dry Rosé but the opulent fresh fruit always gives a hint of fruit sweetness. Flavors of raspberry, cranberry, and a crisp, refreshing finish.
Dr Konstantin Frank Pinot Noir Dry Rosé $15
The west end of New York in the Finger Lakes brings us more amazing Rosés from places that may not be on the top of your list… but should be! The Wine Enthusiast just awarded the 2013 wine 90 Pts and we have been giving Dr Frank 90 Pts for their Rosés for the past 20 years we have been coming here. Aromas and flavors of red berries, ripe peach, and citrus with refreshing mineral notes.
Same continent but different country, the Niagara Region of Canada has been impressing us time and time again with rich, fruity, and full bodied Rosés. At about 43° latitude, Niagara is perfectly situated to grow most of the major grape varieties like Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Zweigelt, Sauvignon Blanc, and much more! Bordeaux, France is at 44° latitude and Napa Valley is about 39° latitude.
2015 Trius Winery at Hillebrand Dry Rose $16
This Rosé is a delicious blend of 75% Gamay Noir and 25% Syrah and all harvested from Niagara Peninsula vineyards. Bright cherry red in color, it can’t help but command your attention. Medium bodied, fresh and fruity with enthusiastic flavors of raspberry, cranberry, and pomegranate. Lively flavors continue over the palate with red berry tea and hints of red currant linger through to a long and refreshing finish. This is honestly one of our favorites!
2015 Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery Cabernet Franc Rosé $22
Another wonderful winery in the Niagara Region of Canada, this Rosé is made from 100% Cabernet Franc grapes. This Rosé was aged 100% in stainless steel tanks. A nice balance of acidity and fresh fruit. Flavors of ripe strawberry, watermelon, and spice. On the second sip, flavors of ripe red cherry and cranberry led to a long, pleasant finish.
Tavel, France has long been the destination for finding the richest and driest Rosés in the world! Located in the southern Rhone region, this area can only produce Rosé wine from red grapes. Which is probably the reason why they are so good because they focus on just one style of wine. Here are some of our favorites.
Famille Perrin Tavel Rosé 2014 $20
A wonderful blend of Cinsault, Grenache, and Mourvédre, these are the grape varieties that the Tavel region grows best! Flavors of sweet red cherry, ripe watermelon, raspberry, and a hint of lavender on the finish. Medium body but with intense fruit flavors, this Rosé can stand up to many dishes including grilled salmon, chicken or seafood salad, baked ham, or medium cheeses.
Chateau d’Aqueria Tavel Rosé 2014 $20
This Rosé is intense ruby red in color with an enticing nose of ripe red fruits. Tantalizing flavors of fresh strawberry, raspberry, and mineral notes that lead to a long, complex finish. It gets this way from its predominant blend of Grenache, Clairette, and Cinsault. Serve with mediterranean dishes, grilled meats, veal, or goats cheese.
Chateau de Campuget Costieres de Nimes Rosé 2015 $12 Bright salmon in color, this Rosé is 70% Syrah and 30% Grenache Blanc. Very aromatic with wonderful scents of fresh red berries and cranberries. Mouth watering flavors of raspberry, red currant, and watermelon. Medium bodied with a nice balance of ripe fruit and acidity. A nice long, smooth finish steals the show! The quality of this Rosé is amazing and the price makes it that much better.
Moving to the other side of the equator, we are finding flavorful Rosés from fun places like South Africa. We just discovered Mulderbosch Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé 2015 for $12 and we love it! Attractively dressed in rich pink, this Rosé has vibrant fragrances of citrus, red fruits, and sandalwood. Zesty flavors of fresh ripe cherry, black currant cordial, and a slight minerality on the finish. Pair with seared tuna steaks, seafood salad, grilled meats, asparagus quiche, or medium to strong cheeses.
Our Garden of Rosés is just about complete but how about a wild card or two?
Marques de Caceres Rosé Rioja 2015 $9
A wonderful Rosé from Spain using Tempranillo and Garnacha grapes which both grow beautifully here. This wine is full of fruit but still light and refreshing on the palate. Flavors of strawberry, ripe raspberry, and spice leads to a long, crisp finish. Perfect with paella, hors d’oeuvres, seafood, summer salads, and chicken.
Zonte’s Footstep Scarlet Ladybird Rosé 2015 $18
Here is a fun and zesty Rosé from Fleurieu Peninsula, Australia made from predominately Grenache and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Dry in style but sweet with natural fruit flavors, your palate will be mesmerized by the intense fresh fruity delights. Medium bodied with a lush mouthfeel, you will find flavors of ripe red berries, blood orange, and fresh strawberries. A hint of spicy notes lead to a long, soft finish. I am not sure if you will be able to find this Rosé at your local market. I ordered mine online and had is shipped to me.
Summer is full of beautiful and exotic sights, smells, and flavors. Pair it all up with a fantastic Rosé from our Garden and you are sure to be living your summer to the fullest. WineSplashing!!