Wine Reviews: Rosé

Posted by | Posted in Wine Reviews | Posted on 05-23-2020

It’s the unofficial start to “summer” here in the northern hemisphere this weekend. But what even is summer in these pandemic times? My plans for everything are cancelled, but I’m healthy and thankful.

And the annual arrival of new rosé wines offers some sense of normalcy amidst the chaos. I’ve been receiving a lot of new pink wines from France and America, new and old (to me) wines that offer some solace in these strange times, which are reviewed below.

These wines were received as trade samples and tasted sighted.

2019 Domaine De Cala Rosé France, Provence, Côteaux Varois
SRP: $17
Pale copper color. Bright aromas of lemon, peach, red apple peel, with mint, nettle and chalk dust. Crisp and zippy on the palate on a medium-bodied frame with white cherries and tangy strawberry fruit. Notes of mint, dandelion, herbal tea, perfume. Salad-friendly, bright, tangy, fun. A blend of Grenache, Cinsault, Rolle, Syrah, Carignan and Grenache Blanc. (87 points IJB)

2019 Château de Peyrassol Rosé­ – France, Provence, Côtes de Provence
SRP: $29
Very pale copper color. Super bright on the nose with white cherries and watermelon rind, topped in dandelion, wild herbs, chalk, saline. Zippy and crunchy on the palate with a bright and steely feel, lemon and grapefruit pith fruit. Light and fun but shows some complexities in terms of chalk, mint, lemon oil and saline. Fun, summery, but deep stuff. Cinsault, Grenache, Syrah, Rolle and Ugni Blanc from 35-year-old vines. (89 points IJB)

2019 Hahn Pinot Noir Rosé USA, California, Central Coast, Monterey
SRP: $15
Medium pink color. Nose shows plump white peach and papaya, tangy red apple, with white tea, clove and sweet red flower notes. Juicy, medium-bodied wine with medium acidity and ripe peach and apricot, drizzled with lime and topped in orange peel. Notes of honey, clover and sliced cucumber add some complexity. Plush yet fresh, fun but showing some depth, especially for the price. (87 points IJB)

2019 Steele Wines Cabernet Franc Rosé USA, California, North Coast, Lake County
SRP: $18
Light cotton candy color. Nose of nettle, white pepper, with watermelon, white cherry and raspberry fruit. Crisp and vibrant on the palate with brisk acidity, creamy texture, and juicy but crisp fruit (watermelon, white cherry, raspberry). Fresh and bright with notes of honeysuckle, basil and white pepper. Crushable but showing significant complexity as well. All Cabernet Franc from the Silva Vineyard. (88 points IJB)

2017 Castello di Amorosa Spumante del Castello Brut RoséUSA, California, Napa Valley
SRP: $49
Light strawberry color. Nose shows chalk, honey, white pepper, clover, on top of strawberries and white cherries. Fine bubbles, a zippy frame with white cherry and raspberry fruit. Notes of fresh mint, verbena, chalk dust add complexity. No deep, bready notes, this is a light, bright, salad and fruit-friendly sparkling wine, but shows complexity and depth. Champagne method Pinot Noir. (88 points IJB)

2019 Gamble Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville
SRP: $20
Light salmon color. Bright and floral on the nose with white cherries, lemon, white peach, with chalky, white tea tones. Creamy texture with a crunchy strawberry, wild raspberry and red apple peel fruit. There’s a pleasant chalky, herbal tea, nettle and honeysuckle feel. Lots of depth and personality. A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot. (89 points IJB)

2019 Ehlers Estate Cabernet Franc Rosé Sylviane USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena
SRP: $32
Deep watermelon color. Gorgeous aromatics of watermelon, juicy cherries, strawberries, open and inviting, quite ripe, but shows complex hay, rhubarb and white pepper elements, too. Plush texture on the palate with lovely depth, ripe and juicy but bright acidity keeps it tight. Watermelon and strawberry fruit on a bed of cut flower stems and cinnamon sticks. Flinty, mineral, salty tones, this is a juicy but racy and complex rose. Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. (91 points IJB)

2018 Castello di Amorosa Pinot Noir Rosato Cresta d’Oro USA, California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
SRP: $39
Pale copper color. Bright, steely, floral nose with strawberries and white cherries, topped in nettle, honeysuckle, sliced cucumber. Bright and vibrant on the palate with sweet strawberry and white cherries, mixed with notes of chalk, verbena, honeysuckle and mint. Juicy but stays light, fresh, salad and summer-friendly stuff. All Pinot Noir. (89 points IJB)

2019 Cenyth Cabernet Franc Rosé USA, California, Sonoma County
SRP: $30
Light watermelon color. Aromas of white cherries and raspberries, with rose petals and white pepper. Bright, vibrant and clean on the palate with raspberries, white cherries and watermelon. Creamy but fresh, complex notes of white pepper, clove, white tea. Such a delightfully balanced and focused rose. All Cabernet Franc. (90 points IJB)

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