This past week I had the pleasure of attending the Annual Rosé Wine tasting from the Atlantic Chapter of the Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers, and we tasted a wide variety of blush wines from 4 different countries. Rosé wines may be one of the oldest types of wines and incorporates some of its color from the skins of the grapes, but not enough to make it a red wine. Both red and white grape varieties are used in making Rosé wine, as I will explain a little later. The key thing about Rosé wine is temperature. Few wines will temperature have the impact on the taste and on the aromas as with a Rosé. During the course of the evening, our wines warmed up and everybody commented on the differences. And then we re-poured from the chilling bottle, and people warmed up to the wines once again… Pardon the Pun!
At the reception we enjoyed the inaugural Rosé wine from Lightfoot & Wolfville – the Bubbly Rosé 2015. This Nova Scotia vineyard is making headlines with their spectacular wines, and this Rosé did not disappoint. Located in the Anapolis Valley, this Canadian vineyard is committed to certified organic and biodynamic agriculture. This bubbly Rosé with its generous acidity and spectacular effervescent quality, exploded with flavor on the palate. Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and some Geisenhelm make up this great wine. The effervescence on the palate still gave away to delicate strawberry and citrus flavors. This Nova Scotia labour of love was one of my favourites of the evening!
Another very popular Rosé wine that evening was the Louis Bernard Cotes de Provence Rosé 2015 from France, which is a combination of Grenache and Syrah. I liked this Rosé because it was very dry, but very soft, and not at all flat on flavor. I liked the acidity of this wine and the strawberry flavors were very evident and many of the tasters that evening found it to be very well-balanced. Great Summer patio wine.
This was probably the most talked about wine of the evening. Why? Because it looks like your typical Rosé wine and then you bring it to your nose and Wham! Anise, black licorice and other aromas you wouldn’t expect from a Rosé wine. The 2015 Le Logis de la Bouchardiere Chinon is made by 6th generation wine-makers dating back to 1850 and packs a punch with 13% alcohol. It was a heavier wine than most of the other Rosé wines, and those licorice flavors were there on the palate as well. One of the ladies I was sitting with also commented she tasted toasted caramel. Again, an unusual flavour to be found in a blush wine. It contains some Cabernet Franc, which explains the caramel and anise licorice tones. Cabernet Franc is used in the Bordeaux region a lot, blending with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, so it was a little unusual to see it show up in a Rosé wine.
I apologize for the blurry picture so I included a stock picture. This was the deepest colored Rosé wine of the evening, and when we found it was a Rioja from Spain that contains 96% Tempranillo, it made sense. The other 4% is also a red grape, Grenache, and will probably come as no surprise that it has 13.5% alcohol. The rep for this wine was in attendance and said the next vintage will probably be lighter, less time on the skins. It’s a fantastic wine that is priced at $16. Most Rosé wines pair well with salads, appetizers, or made for patio sipping. This had a little more body and actually would pair well with grilled chicken or grilled pork.
My wine of the week is also a Rosé… one of my favorites from the evening, but although many people put it in the Top 3 of the evening, I think I was the only person who loved it as much as I did.
The Chateau des Deux Rocs Cabieres Premices 2015 is a mouthful to say and an interesting mouthful of Rosé on the palate. This was a great example of how temperature played a role in the taste of the wine. It was the 5th wine we had tried and because it was warm that evening, the temperature of this wine had really warmed up. One of the ladies I was sitting with commented on how this was her least favorite. When we re-poured from the fridge, she was astonished to realize how much she really liked this wine. I loved the tropical fruit flavors, the notes of tangerine, and citrus flavors. I thought it made for an interesting wine. I don’t drink a lot of Rosé as a rule, but I’m going to start. It’s a great aperitif wine and a great wine for Summer.
Thanks for reading and till next week, Cheers