Everything’s coming up Rosés!
Mother’s Day is an excellent excuse to get an early start on summer and open a lovely delicately dry pink wine to celebrate with you favourite female friends! Many mothers, daughters, sisters, aunts and grandmothers enjoy a glass of Rosé.
France's Fête des Mères is thought to date back to 1806, the Napoleonic era, when the French emperor announced a special day to recognize mothers of large families, usually celebrated on the last Sunday in May. France has a long history of winemaking and, of course, that includes Rosés.
Founded in the 12th century by Cistercian monks, Chatau de Jau’s mansion was built in the hills above the Agly River - north-east of Perpignan and close to the Spanish border - in 1789.
A slang term, ‘Jaja’ is an old French word for a glass of everyday, thirst-quenching wine. Le Jaja de Jau Syrah Rosé (313359) $15.79 is a remarkably dry Vins de Pays d’Oc with subtle notes of raspberry, cherry and red currant fruit and a sprinkling of pepper in the finish.
Mother’s Day in Canada is celebrated earlier than in France, on the second Sunday in May. But local Rosés are appreciated just as much.
Here in British Columbia, in our more temperate climate, wine grapes don’t swell and ripen all through the cooler nights, which helps them retain higher levels of refreshing natural acidity, so our local Rosés are usually bright and sassy.
Specialists in Pinot Noir and high-toned aromatic white wines, 50th Parallel Estate Winery makes wines of exceptional balance and elegance. 50th Parallel Pinot Noir Rosé (319764) $17.99 exudes aromas and flavours of fresh cherries, strawberries and ripe raspberries. It finishes with lingering notes of cranberries and sage.
Opened in 2009 by Roger and Jillian Wong and Geri and Ross Davis, Intrigue Wines is situated in the Lake Country region, 25 kms north of Kelowna just north of Gray Monk Winery. Roger Wong and Geri Davis have close ties to Gray Monk, having worked there – Wong as winemaker, Davis as Controller.
Intrigue’s “Social” wines are jazzily packaged, as cheerful as the wines themselves. Intrigue Social Rosé (34336) $17.49 is an intriguing blend of 87 per cent Riesling, 7 per cent Rotberger, 5 per cent Merlot, and 1 per cent Malbec. Full of bright strawberry and rhubarb flavours, this summer sipper is tough not to like, finishing with teasing hints of pink grapefruit and watermelon.
Like Canadians, Australians celebrate Mother’s Day on the second Sunday in May. Would a French winemaker in Australia still celebrate Fête des Mères on the last Sunday of the month?
French winemaker Michel Chapoutier established Tournon in Australia in 2007 shortly after purchasing property in the heart of the Victorian Pyrenees and Heathcote, making elegant wines from the Syrah/Shiraz grape of his homeland and utilizing his biodynamic winegrowing philosophy.
A very pale pink, particularly for an Australian Rosé. Chapoutier’s Tournon Mathilda Rosé 447219 $19.99 is made in the traditional Rosé de Provence style - light and fresh with delicate aromas and flavours of cherries, pomegranates and raspberries.
Ahead of most of the rest of the world, Spain celebrates Día de las Madres on the first Sunday in May. Although chocolates and flowers are the most common gifts, a glass of Rosado is almost always appreciated.
Made from Monastrell under Juan Gil's Honoro Vera label Bodegas Ateca Honoro Vera Rosado (625202) $19.49 is rich and ripe and features a medley of fruit flavours ranging from candied rhubarb through strawberry and cherry to subtle sweet watermelon.
In New Zealand – as in neighbouring Australia – Mother’s Day is celebrated on the second Sunday in May. As we in the northern
hemisphere move in Spring, New Zealand moves into Fall… but anytime is great for a glass of fine Rosé!
From New Zealand’s Marlborough region, the Stoneleigh vineyards are littered with stones left by an ancient riverbed. The stones soak up the warmth of the sun’s rays by day and radiate that heat to help ripen the grapes by night.
More than 80 per cent of Stoneleigh Marlborough Latitude Rosé (760074) $22.99 was fermented in French oak which adds a touch of spice to the gorgeous melon and mango aromas and the deliciously full-bodied strawberry and cranberry fruit flavours.
Next weekend is Mother’s Day, here. Pick a pink wine to celebrate!
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