Catch up with Wil Bailey on the rosés of Europe and hear what our discerning Portfolio Director has to share after sifting through thousands of rosés to focus on only the best -with a particular focus on the finest of France.
“2015 is an excellent vintage all over Europe. It is a warm, “easy” vintage all over with plenty of fruit and ripeness. This will make it a particularly enjoyable red wine vintage in most corners of the continent. This easy ripeness makes for “easy to enjoy” roses as well, but honestly, it is a bit of a double edged sword as it was an easy vintage for producers who are not firmly focused on the “freshness” of their roses to make wines which might be better if they had a little more crispness and acidity. This is largely NOT the case with our producers, as we work hard to partner with people who value balance and freshness in their wines as much as we do. I’m just saying, warm, easy vintages do not actually always produce an abundance of honestly great roses, so this is a vintage to try before you buy.”
Top Three (these are all French, because that’s where we just were…)
Cocagne, Coteaux de Vendemois – I’m thrilled to tell you to inform your customers this wine is back in full effect. Perhaps not as intensely pink grapefruit as it was two years ago, but it’s super tasty (2015 is clearly a VERY good Rose vintage in the Loire…). We told you to warn your customers off of this wine last year. Hopefully that integrity will pay off as you tell them to get back on this train hard this year. Yum!
Les Hautes Plateaux, Alpes de Haute Provence – This is a new wine this year, and I could not be more jazzed to present it to you and your customers. We have been looking for another great/accessible/well packaged Provencal Rose for a couple of years, and this will be a home run. It’s also incredibly affordable! This wine is made by the Breban family who makes the Baron de Seillac for us. FYI, the entire focus of the Breban family is Provencal sparkling wines and Rose. This is an example of one of our partners who is ENTIRELY FOCUSED ON FRESHNESS. See what I’m saying here?!
To be clear, I am in no way shorting the quality of the Dragon, l’Ermitage and the Cab de Saumur. They were great last year, and they are great again, I’m just saying the three wines above are particular overperformers. The Acanthes is very good again. It’s one which “embraces the vintage”. This is to say that it still tastes great, and at this price isn’t crowd pleasing exactly what you are looking for? I think the Carteresses Tavel is gonna be a great Tavel. It’s not shy, but let’s be clear, Tavel is not supposed to be shy. It’s got lots of power and intensity on a great mineral frame, and it is still the absolute best value anywhere in this appellation!
I also want to point out the cool expansion of our Italian Rose section with the additions of the Garofoli (Montepulciano) Rosato, and the Aia Vecchia (90% Sangiovese / 10% Merlot) Rosato. Both are fresh, understated (particularly by Italian standards), pale in color, and have cool packages to boot BTW – our Rose tasting is currently scheduled for Thursday, April 28th!
Borsao, Muga, and Rio Madre all look to be great again this year!”
-Wil Bailey, Portfolio Director at The Wine Company