Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Rosé Wines are Here.

Warm weather is (basically) here and the mood is playful. People sit outside at the café after work, talking, enjoying the weather, and drinking a glass of rosé. They open a bottle when they get home and sit by the window or on the deck, and feel the spring slowly turn towards summer.

We have some fantastic rosés this year for you to share with your customers. Wines of pure and easy drinking joy, wines that unfold a bit more slowly, even a cult-favorite sparkling wine. Some of these are rather limited, so reserve yours now.

Domaine Sainte Lucie Côtes de Provence MiP* (Made in Provence), 2009 - This is simply a great wine at a great price. Stack it by the cash registers, pour it by the glass, get it out there because the people love it! It's a beautifully fruited and spicy Provençal rosé that compliments anything on the spring and summer table, and sips perfectly on its own too.

A blend of 60% cinsault, 20% syrah, and 20% grenache, all harvested in the cool night time air from the marly limestone and gravel soils in vineyards at the foot of Mount Sainte Victoire. These great vineyards benefit from southern exposure and also from the constant winds that keep the grapes free of rot.

Domaine des Diables Côtes de Provence "Lessez-Vous Tenter," 2009 - Made by Virgine and Guillaume Philip, the same team that recently took over wine making duties at her father's Domaine Sainte Lucie. This wine is about deep summer fruit and steely minerals, and it shows the spice you would expect from a syrah-based rosé (60% syrah, 20% grenache and 20% cinsault). This is far more limited than MIP*, although the pricing on the wines is essentially the same - as low as $15 or $16 on a retail shelf.

Here's a rosé that we are bringing in for the first time, a dry wine from the upper Mosel in Germany at only 11% alcohol! This wine is made from the roter elbling grape, a forgotten variety that resembles Poulsard in that it is a red grape that is vinified as a red wine, but can make only a pale rosé colored wine. Mathias Dostert Rosay, 2009 - this is a special and unique wine - a lovely nose of sweet fruit (think kumquats), pine trees, spices, and flowers. It is well balanced and very refreshing. It comes from 30 year old vines on deep limestone soils, and it is serious and delicious rosé. Retail price on this one can be as low as $10. Only 300 cases imported, and it's already moving fast.

Wilfred Rousse Chinon Rosé de Saingée, 2009 - Wilfred Rousse is quietly making some of the most delicious wines in Chinon. This rosé is made from free-run cabernet franc juice and it is very fresh, a bit wild, untamed. There are aromas of spicy strawberries and the wine has a subtle concentration, great acidity, and shows complexity of fruit and hints of the dried green leafiness that distinguish it as a wine of Chinon. This is a very fine wine and it should retail for $14-$16. Again, only 300 cases imported.

And then there is Bandol. Bandol rosés have the potential to be among the very finest in the world. This one more than meets that potential, and at an attractive price (should cost between $19-$23 retail). Domaine Castell-Reynoard Bandol Rosé, 2009 - 75% mourvedre, 25% grenache. It is that beautiful pale onion skin color that happens with mourvedre. Well structured, very savory, very mineral, very complex. Jean-Marie Castell plows the soil, harvests by hand, ferments this wine in 50 hl oak barrels, and bottles unfiltered. This one keeps unfolding in the glass and should age very well. A rosé for the dinner table.

We also offer very small quantities of the amazing Philippe Bornard Ploussard Rose Petillant Naturel (2009) - this cultish sparkling ploussard is sheer joy, made by one of the superstars of the Jura. Bornard's wines are getting great reviews everywhere you look, and this one vanished quickly last year. Reservations recommended.

There are other rosés too - please contact for more information.

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