Tag Archives: Rose

Tasting Note: French Valley Rosé

Another wine from the Leelanau Peninsula near Traverse City in the northern part of Michigan’s lower peninsula.  This is 100% Pinot Noir.

French Valley Rosé (2014) Leelanau Peninsula, Michigan – $20

Color: quite dark, midway between reddish-pink and copper.

Aroma: strawberry, red currant, and cherry.  Quite fruity.

Taste: a little closed – don’t drink this ice-cold! A touch of residual sugar, good acidity, and strawberry from front to back.

Nice but not outstanding.  Worth hunting down if you’re up north, but I wouldn’t cellar it.

 

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Tasting Note: Aurora Rosé

This is from Aurora Cellars in the Leelanau Peninsula region, just west of Traverse City.  I bought this last year on one of my tasting trips, and I enjoyed it on the 4th of July with lamb kebabs. This wine is a blend of Syrah and Pinot Blanc.

Aurora Rosé (2015) Leelanau Peninsula, Michigan – $18

Color: quite dark, copper-orange more than pink.

Aroma: not much on the nose.

Taste: strawberry, then red currant.  Good balance and acidity for a food wine.

This is OK, and definitely quaffable on a hot afternoon.  It also paired well with the lamb and roasted vegetables (purple onions, orange bell peppers, and mushrooms).

 

Tasting Note – Bowers Harbor 2896 Rosé

One of the wines I picked up last year in Traverse City – should be a good pairing for the roasted vegetable quesadillas I’m making for dinner tonight.  This is a blend of 67% Cabernet France and 33% Merlot.

Bowers Harbor 2896 Rosé (2014) Old Mission Peninsula, Michigan – $32

Color: bright copper with a hint of orange.

Aroma: strawberry fruit, a hint of vanilla and spice.

Taste: Creamy strawberry and red currant fruit, moderate acidity, just a touch of tannin, with great balance front to back. Although a little more length on the finish would be nice. This is a food rosé, it’s absolutely dry and it has enough heft to match with a cold steak salad, roasted vegetables, or salmon.

 

Rosé Roundup IV: Morgan & York

A nice shop on the south side of Ann Arbor (Packard, just south of Stadium).  They usually have something very interesting, but not always the value I’m looking for.  Their spring rosé selection as of mid-May was around 15 wines, so I made a judicious selection of six.

Cibonne Tentations (2016) Cotes de Provence, France – $18

Color: pale pink.

Aroma: yeasty, with raspberry fruit.

Taste: OK – some good berry fruit, and long on the finish.

Palatable; I’d drink this.

Pierre Morin (2016) Sancerre, France – $25

Color: still pale, but slightly darker than the Cibonne.

Aroma: darker fruit notes, mostly berry and cherry.

Taste: More acidity, good strawberry in the midpalate.

Sancerre is best known for its white wines (Sauvignon Blancs) but they also grow Pinot Noir for reds and rosés. This bottling, unfortunately, doesn’t show off the Pinot well – $25 is too steep for this.

G. D. Vajra Rosabella (2016) Italy – 17

Color: light pink.

Aroma: strawberry!

Taste: lots of acidity, like a good strawberry shortcake! Bright and zippy up front, the a long and tart finish.

This is produced in the Barolo region, but no official indication of what varieties they are using – Nebbiolo, Dolcetta, and Barbera would be typical grapes in that part of Italy.

Domaine des Cassagnoles Rosé Plaisir (2016) Cotes de Gascogne – $13

Color: medium pink to copper.

Aroma: berries, a little darker than most, some earthiness.

Taste: richer, with a touch of tannin. Some Grenache in this?

Not quite as long on the finish as the Italian, but a better mouthfeel throughout and much more suitable for food.  My favorite of the bunch.

Pierre-Marie Chermette “Les Griottes” (2016) Beaujolais Rosé, France – $18

Color: pale pink.

Aroma: nice red currants and floral nose.

Taste: Good mouthful of fruit – better balanced than most.  Some tannin on the finish.

Nice; this is better for an aperitif or a light meal.

Chateau de Manissy “La Belle Etoile” (2016) IFP Mediterranee, France – $12

Color: medium pink to orange.

Aroma: sweetish red fruits and berries.

Taste: lots of berry up front, then dull in the midpalate. The finish is short but full of fruit.

Decent, not great.  Also better for cocktail hour.

 

Out of everything I’ve tasted, the Domaine de Cassagnoles from Gascony is the winner, especially for the money.  I’m recommending it.  I’ve ordered a case and that should last me through the summer.

Rosé Roundup III: A & L Wine Castle

A couple of pinks from this store on the west side of Ann Arbor; I’m a fan of the Cabernet Franc rosé from Mulderbosh – let’s see how the Cab Sauv treats me.

Unparalleled Rosé (2016) Coteaux Varois en Provence, France – $16

Color: extremely pale.

Aroma: Rose petal and raspberry.

Taste: Melon, apricot, raspberry – quite tart.

OK, but not great.

Mulderbosch Cabernet Sauvingon Rosé (2016) Coastal Region, South Africa – $11

Color: medium straight pink.

Aroma: uncertain – more flowery than anything else.

Taste: Cabernet body, with red currant, raspberry, and cherry.

A good value, but not quite as much oomph as I’m looking for.

 

Rosé Roundup II: World Market

Oh dear, this is not turning out to be a good year for the pink stuff.  Quite a few bottles, all of them disappointing.  Details below.

La Riviera Rosé (2016) Cotes de Provence, France – $13

Color: pale rose gold.

Aroma: raspberry.

Taste: medium body and clean, not much in the mid-palate, almost nothing on the finish. A quaffer at best.

Hecht & Bannier Rosé (2016) Cotes de Provence, France – $20

Color: medium pink.

Aroma: raspberry and strawberry.

Taste: tart fruit and a little stemmy.  Also quite thin.

VieVité Rosé (2016) Cotes de Provence, France – $22

Color: light pink to copper.

Aroma: raspberry.

Taste: thin again.  There’s just nothing there.  Very disappointing.

Aime Roquesanté Rosé (2016) Cotes de Provence, France – $14

Color: rose gold.

Aroma: berries and floral.

Taste: Decent up front, with medium berry fruit, then fades quite quickly.  No length at all.

Louis Jadot Rosé (2016) Coteaux Bourguignons, France – $15

Color: pale copper.

Aroma: quite closed – I get nothing from this, even as it warms up.

Taste: Again, no length.  There’s almost nothing in this glass but acidity and alcohol.

El Coto Rosé (2015) Rioja, Spain – $14

A prior year, which is par for the course for Rioja.  Let’s see if a change of vintage does anything.

Color: orange-copper-pink; the darkest of the bunch.

Aroma: muscat and orange peel – quite unusual.

Taste: tight and slightly tannic red fruit.  A little body but still nothing great.

 

All six of these wines are disappointing – I can’t recommend any of them.  The only two I’d drink again, even if they were free, would be the El Coto from Spain and La Riviera from France.  The 20-dollar bottles are especially disappointing.

Rosé Roundup I: Trader Joe’s

I’ll be posting a number of tasting comparisons over the next 2 weeks, reviewing our options for summer rosé.  Today’s review is four from Trader Joe’s: two Chilean, one Spanish, and one from California.  These are all wines that are exclusive to Trader Joe’s.

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Loma Negra Rosé (2016) Valle Central, Chile – $5

Color: very pale gris-style rosé.

Aroma: tart cherry and berry notes.

Taste: light, mostly berries and a touch of sweetness.  Not much there at all.

Vinas Chilenas Rosario Estate Rosé (2016) Valle Central, Chile – $4

Color: rose-gold.

Aroma: strawberry and a little yeast on the nose.

Taste: strawberry and raspberry, a little fuller than the Loma Negra.  Short finish.

La Granja 360 Garnacha Rosé (2015) Carninena, Spain – $5

I highly recommend a number of the La Granja reds; they are really good pork-chop-and-hamburger wines, and you can’t beat the price.  Let’s see how the rosé fares.

Color: dark pink and copper.

Aroma: the nose is quite faint – raspberry?

Taste: more tannic, Garnacha quality to this.  Unfortunately, also a short finish.

VinTJs Pinot Noir Rose (2016) Arroyo Grande Valley, California – $9

Color: darkest, a solid pinkish-red.

Aroma: sweetish, with dark fruit and strawberry.

Taste: a fruity style of Pinot, with lots of strawberry.  Decent body and length of finish, finally.

 

Overall, a pretty disappointing bunch.  The first three are all Not Recommended – the VinTJs is good enough, but nothing special.