Despite the occasional thunderstorm, summer is here as heralded by delivery of this season's roses. Roses are quintessential back yard wines, pairing perfectly with burgers, grilled chicken, salads, and my favorite summer fare - seafood paella! The ones I love I have to roll the dice on, setting up pre-orders in the depths of winter in the hopes that I can get my hands on them by summer. This is only made more difficult by the double digit growth again this year in the American rose market.
This year sees the return of a couple favorites, the Jolie Folle from Provence and from the Loire Valley the remarkable Chateau Chateleuserie Cab Franc rose (due here in 2 weeks!). Also from the south in nearby Languedoc is the classic Chateau Deux Rocs with Cinsault and Syrah. Another Kermit Lynch never ceases to amaze with his little gems! Italians have never been huge rose drinkers, but they have boarded the rose train and we have one of the best. The Poggio Ai Ginepri Rosato
For those who prefer the softer sweeter American style, we have the Tulip rose from Colorado's own Two Rivers winery. A hard to find, sweet Riesling based rose. Also from the U.S. is the Grenache based Pink Belly from Skylark. Done very dry and clean as an ode to Provence with its crushed red cherry and stone character. Rounding out the domestics is a Sangiovese rose from Alexander Valley, a favorite from last year that we were able to score a few cases of again this year!
From Spain I found a classic Tempranillo based rose from Ribera del Duero, dry but softer and already a favorite for those just dicovering European rose. And just today, I fell in love with a delicious Mencia based rose from Bierzo with its gorgeous strawberry, cantaloupe, ruby grapefruit and key lime zest flavors.
All of the above are offered by the glass or bottle in Bitto, and all are for sale in the Orchard Wine Cellar where we have a bunch more varieties even one from Cabernet Sauvignon! They start at around $10 a bottle and none cost more than $20 so stop in and taste summer!