More than just a Bikini Wine
10th Jul 2013
James Lawrence charts the growing popularity of the pink stuff
Nothing defines summer drinking like a chilled glass of rose from say Provence, or maybe the Loire Valley. The category, once relegated to what my friend always dismissed as a 'bikini wine,' is seriously popular at the moment and shows no signs of abating. Passe has suddenly become tres chic, at the delight of French producers who make about a third of the total amount of rose produced each year.
So what is simply a red wine that incorporates a small amount of colour from the grape skins through a quick maceration has become all the rage. And well it should, for at its best rose is a delicious wine style: offering summer fruits, a bright acidity and wonderfully refreshing quality. For this resurgence, we should partially thank Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, who in a partnership with Château Miraval in Provence released a 'Brangelina' Château Miraval Rosé in June at £18.95 a bottle. Too expensive for rose you may think? Not for the UK's consumers, who purchased 6,000 bottles within 5 hours of the wine being released.
As this gorgeous weather is set to continue, I have selected my 3 favourite rose wines for divine pleasure:
2012 Luis Felipe Edwards Mountain View Rose
The perfect accompaniment to summer salads and picnics, this supple, light rose is packed with red berry aromas and flavours, balanced by a keen acidity. It's low price makes it all the more attractive!
2012 Château Pigoudet 'La Chapelle' Rose
Where to buy: http://www.majestic.co.uk/find/Colour-is-Rosé+Wine/product-is-08142
One of the best value roses I have come across, the 2012 Château Pigoude is an amazing effort from this renowned producer in Provence. It seduces you with it's light, delicate aromas of rose petal, apple and red cherry. Fresh, elegant and delicious, one bottle of this fabulous rose will never be enough!
2012 Chateau D'Esclans Rose
Sacha Lichine's superstar rose isn't cheap but it's undoubtedly one of the finest in its class from the beautiful Cotes De Provence region. An singular blend of Grenache and Italy's Vermentino, the wine benefits form a period of oak-aging which adds considerable complexity and texture to an already delicious and fragrant wine. Expect red fruits, almonds, vanilla and creaminess by the bucket load.