Revealing Rosé: A BAKER’s DOZEN

As noted yesterday, it is now Rosé season (or at least the first half of it) and that means a lot of folks are thinkin’ pink. Let me give you a little to think about. Here are a baker’s dozen of the dry French Rosés we recommend. To get to these (and the other dozen or so we recommend), I tasted well over 70  Rosés this year. I know, it’s a tough job but someone’s got to do it.Each of these fits somewhere on the scale of “Beach” or “Food” with a couple able to handle both. All of them indicate that in their note. What are you waiting for? Get after it and drink Pink!

DAUVERGNE RANVIER Domaine des Muretins Rosé, Tavel, 2016 ($19.94)
45% Red Grenache, 15% White Grenache, 15%, Cinsault, 16%, Syrah, and 9% Picpoul grown onclay-based: stony marls, pebbles on layers of sand, thick clay with limestone fragments, and colluvial deposits planted between 1960-1998. Fermented in stainless steel tanks for 20 days at 59 degrees. 20% of the wine is aged in French oak barrel (228 liter barrels that were used for 1 wine) for 4 months, 80% Stainless steel tanks.     Darker pink almost Clairet color with good legs; dry, light-bodied with fresh acidity and medium phenolics. Supple, fresh, lively. Darker Rosé with fresher red fruit and enough citrus along with a distinctly mineral earth. Almost salty. Fresh and refreshing but food Rosé. BearScore: 90+.

LA SABLE Rosé, Luberon, 2016 ($8.99)
A blend of 65% Grenache, 20% Carignan, and 15% Syrah.     Pale-copper-orange color well formed legs; dry, medium-light-bodied with fresh acidity and scant phenolics. Bubble gum dust, peach, strawberry and watermelon nose. Palate offers fresh red fruit and citrus with mineral and dust. Beach Rosé. BearScore: 90.

Domaine du MOULIN de VERDILLON, Cotes de Provence, 2016 ($11.99)
A blend of 70% Grenache, 15% Syrah, and 15% Cinsault.     Salmon pink color with good legs; dry, medium light-bodied with freshly balanced acidity and light phenolics. More fruit and freshness with crisp red berry fruit and enough citrus to go with a clean dusty mineral base. Lovely pure fresh and delicious. More of a Beach Rosé. BearScore: 91+.

PIERRE ROUGON Rose, Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence, 2016 ($9.49)
A blend of 80% Grenache and 20% Syrah.     Pink with good legs; light-bodied with refreshing acidity and scant phenolics. Clean and fresh and very much like the Commanderie de Bargemone but at a much lower price. Classic Aix. BearScore: 90+.

PIERRE ROUGON Rose, Cotes du Rhone, 2016 ($9.49)
A blend of 75% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 5% Cinsault, and 5% Carignan.     Rose pink in color with good legs; almost dry, medium light-bodied with fresh acidity and light phenolics. Sweet bubble gum and red fruit but dry in the mouth. Clean and structured with enough mineral. Fine Food Rosé. Yum. BearScore: 90+.

DOMAINE FONTVAL Rosé, Mediterranee IGP, 2016 ($7.99)
A blend of 70% Grenache and 30% Mouvedre pressed after picking early in the morning. No oak. Pink with an orangey tint with good legs; dry, medium light-bodied with freshly balanced acidity and light phenolics. Clean soft red fruit with just enough citrus and some dust and a hint of bubblegum dust. Delicious and fresh but softly satisfying. Fine value Beach Rosé. BearScore: 89+.

Ch. de BRIGUE Provence Rose, Cotes de Provence, 2016 ($8.59)
A blend of 55% Grenache and 45% Cinsault. Pale-copper-salmon color with good legs; dry, medium-light-bodied with freshly balanced acidity and light phenolics. Fresh, lively simple easy drinking red fruit Rosé with enough citrus fruit. Pushes the right buttons for a Beach Rosé. BearScore: 89.

Les MEYANS Provence Rose, Cotes de Provence, 2016 ($8.59)
A blend of 50% Cinsault, 35% Mourvedre, and 15% Grenache.     Pale-copper-orange color with good legs; dry, medium-light-bodied with fresh acidity and scant phenolics. Spicier and earthier but still offering fine red fruit and enough citrus over mineral earth. Easy in the mouth Splts the difference between a Food Rosé and Beach Rosé. BearScore: 89.

FLEURS de PRAIRIE Rosé, Cotes de Provence, 2016 ($12.99)
A classic blend of 55% Grenache, 30% Cinsault, and 15% Syrah sourced from 20-year-old vines planted in clay-limestone hillsides at an altitude of 350-500 feet. The grapes are direct pressed to ensure a light, fresh style and fermented in temperature-controlled stainless-steel tanks.   Pale-copper-pink in color with good legs; dry, medium light-bodied with refreshing acidity and light phenolics. Subtle clean, fresh, red fruit Rosé that grows on me as I taste it. Dry but with a sweetness of red fruit and citrus and a notable mineral component. More Beach Rosé than food wine but has enough character to work at the table. BearScore: 90+.

Ch. le SELVE MAGUELONNE, IGP Coteaux de l’Ardeche, 2016 ($13.29)
40% Grenache, 40% Cinsault, and 20% Syrah from certified organic vineyards, direct press with vinification in concrete tanks, indigenous yeast, soils are limestone and Kaolinite clay.       Orange-salmon in color with good legs; dry, medium light-bodied with freshly balanced acidity and medium phenolics. Fresh vivid red fruit ripe strawberry Rosé with spice and mineral. Beach Rosé BearScore: 90+.

Ch. VIGNELAURE la Source, Coteaux d’Aix en Provence, 2016 ($14.99)
40% Grenache, 30% Cinsault, 20% Syrah, and 10% Cabernet Sauvignan vinified separetly. Slow fermentation at 17 to 18°C in stainless steel tanks. Aged for three months on fines lees, with bâtonnage before bottling.     Pale-pink-salmon in color with good legs; dry, medium-bodied with freshly balanced acidity and scant phenolics. Lean and fresh with sweet red fresh vivid strawberry. Beach Rosé. BearScore: 91.

Ch. VIGNELAURE, Coteaux d’Aix en Provence, 2016 ($22.69)
40% Grenache, 30% Syrah, and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon hand harvest with sorting. Direct pneumatic pressing. Slow fermentation at 17°C in stainless steel tanks. 7% of the Cabernet Sauvignon has fermented in a 400liter barrel of new french oak. Aged three months on fines lees, with bâtonnage before bottling.   Pale-salmon-pink in color with good legs; dry, lighter-bodied with fresh acidity and scant phenolics. Subtle elegant juicy style of Rosé with lots of mineral and fresh red and citrus fruit. Delicious. Holds you attention. Food Rosé. BearScore: 92.

DOMAINE de la FERME BLANCE Rose, Cassis, 2016 ($19.94)
50% Cinsault and 50% Grenache grown on a clay and limestone hillside made using direct press.     Orange-pink color with good legs; dry, medium-bodied with fresh acidity and scant phenolics. Clean, fresh juicier red fruit more Food Rosé than beach rosé with a nice bit of mineral earth. Fine fresh feel. BearScore: 90+.

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