29 July, 2011

Summer's Here - Time For Our 87th Annual "Rosè Roundup"

Well, now that everyone who's whining about the recent fog and cool temps here in the SF Bay area finally has their way and we're in the start of a nice heat wave, it's a perfect time to roll out our 87th annual review of pink wines otherwise known as "The $20 Dollar Wine Blog Rosè Roundup"

So, to start, let's talk about what rosè' is and what it isn't.


Pink, good, purposeful or saignee, rich, lean, racy, sexy, delicious with food.


White Zinfandel, "blush wine" sweet, thick.

What's we're talking about here are wines that are made for people who like wine not those who don't like wine and want something that disguises the taste.

Since we know what we're talking about here, let's get on with the roundup.

First, is the 2010 Unti Rosè . It's the best domestic rosè being produced right now...at least as far as I know. I've tried a lot of rosè  and this is by FAR the best domestic rosè you can get. Luscious, flavorful, expressive and you just know that Mick and Sebastian really care about making this wonderful wine. It's purposeful rosè using Grenache and Mouvedre from the Unti vineyards in Dry Creek Valley in a very Provencal style.

Retail: $23
Grade: A+

Next is the 2010 Grey Stack Cellars Rosè . It's a saignee blend of Syrah and Grenache with 10% Viognier added for good measure. Clean, good with food and some interesting red fruit (strawberry & watermelon) notes.

Retail: $24
Grade: B

The 2010 Russian River Vineyards Rosè  is a Pinot Noir based saignee from the Sonoma Coast AVA. it's completely different than the above rosès in that it's Pinot based and both the nose and the palate are lead to much more citrus, more racy and more summer fruit hints. I'd love this with a fruit and sheep's ricotta salad with picked strawberries.

Retail: $19
Grade: B+

2010 Domaine Le Galantin Rosè is a super value from Bandol, La Provence, France. Bandol is the place! It's where it's at in Rosè! The King of Rosè. Period. Very similar to the Unti or vice versa. Lots of great lushness (although not as much as the Unti), super fruit, freshness, acid. Very versatile pairing opprtunities including salmon, halibut or other white fish, pork, BBQ (yes!), roasted chicked, salads and on and on!
Widely available in better supermarkets and wine shops.

Retail: $17
Grade: A-

2010 Senorio de Sarria Vinedo Rosado from Navarra, Spain is a saignee that's very similar in style, but not it taste to the Grey Stack Two Pinks. Bigger in overall style with less shoulders than the Provence style rosè, it lends great sumer fruit overtones as well. Watermelon, cherries, currants. Very interesting. Fruit from vines planted in 1953. I'd go for pork or paella with this one. Very good QPR!!!

Retail: $10
Grade: B+

The gold standard for ALL of rose is the 2010 Domaine Tempier Bandol Rosè. It's the King of Kings and you can't get better than this. It's everything you could ask for in rosè. Fresh and lush, acidic and smooth, soft and wide, racy and lingering. Perfection in a bottle. Goes with almost anything but steak. Awesome! -- of course you have to PAY for awesome!

Retail: seen as low as $34, but normally around $45
Grade: A (yes it's WAY over the price point, but it's a well worth it splurge)

So, whether you enjoy the light salmon color of the Provencal style, or the richer color of the saignees, please find something wonderful to pair with a great bottle of pink and enjoy the warmth of the sun, the warmth of friends and the cool flavors of a great rosè!

What are some of your favorite pinks? Drop a link for us to check out!



  1. Good lineup, haven't had the Unti but I'll be on the lookout for it down here.

  2. Beau, I'm interested to hear your thoughts after you taste it. Lemme know.


More than happy to have your comments below. Thx.