Social Call: Three rose wines to try this summer
June 5, 2013 at 1:05 a.m.
DO YOU KNOW?
Roses get their color three different ways:
• The first is by putting the juice from the grapes in contact with the red skins during fermentation, similar to red wine production.
• Another method is called saignee, or bleeding, which removes some wine while it is going through a primary fermentation for reds. This makes the red wine redder, while retaining some wine at an early contact stage while it is pink. This is the way that many white zinfandels are produced in the United States.
• The third method, and one that is highly disputed, is combining red and white wines to make a pink color. The European Union has proposed making this a legal method for obtaining rose, but it was handily defeated by countries with a long history of rose wine-making, which argued that this substandard method would endanger the craft behind true rose wine-making. Thus, no wine bearing the name rose from Europe is made this way.
Hold your cup close to your lips. Pause, inhale and taste the hidden flavors of your favorite summertime wine before taking a sip.
Swirl, smell again and then drink.
Feel the rush of a dry, light, subtle sweetness run down your throat with the sun against your back.
This is how your summer weekends should be spent, if you haven't started to do so already.
Forget the beers, cocktails and slushie drinks. It's summer, so drink rose wines while they're still hip.
Last summer, a wandering journey through the aisles of Spec's led me to three different roses.
I was drawn to the labeling of the Triennes rose, bearing the image of a tiny boar ready to viciously rip through an unsuspecting vineyard.
Place a Triennes rose bottle on the table and suddenly, you're on the Titanic during a summer voyage.
With a plate of baked sockeye salmon and yogurt-laden quinoa, you're off to the right start of a rose adventure.
Not one for discretion? Abandon your cautionary blanket and nestle up to a Chateau Trocard Bordeaux Rose. The Trocard is much sweeter than the Triennes and not as pretentious in flavor.
And for those of you who like to keep things at a happy medium, settle for the Domaine de Cabasse Cotes du Rhone Villages Seguret Le Rose de Marie-Antoinette.
It's got a fancy bottle that's sure to impress any brunch or picnic crowd.
Whether pronounced like the flower or with a French inflection (ROSE-AY), a rose should aim to contain the right amount of mirth and snootiness without tasting like a cheap bum wine.
Rose wines aside, you might also want to check out the sangria recipes at Twin Liquors.
And they've also got a flirty Tosti Pink Moscato perfect for the pool - light, lively and not overtly fruity.
And if you are a sucker for sweet, check out the Smirnoff sorbets. They're good for mixing with a club or diet soda.
Back at Spec's, you'll find a few vinho verdes, or young wines, made from grapes picked early in the season.
Verdes typically contain a 5 to 7 percent amount of alcohol and are pretty refreshing.
At the grill, try sipping on a light glass of a good hamburger wine like Kings Estate pinot noir.
Wherever your wine-ventures lead you before Labor Day - be sure to put at least three different shades of rose on your tab this summer.