One of the best things about rosé wine is that it is generally very affordable. It is rare to find a bottle of rosé that costs over $30, and there are many amazing wines in the $20 range. This month we are featuring 3 wines from 3 different wine regions that are all great bargains and are well below $20. The first is a Cinsault dominant rosé from the South of France, the second is a rosé of Zweiglet from Austria, and the third is from the French island of Corsica, made from the Sciaccarellu grape.
Region: Saint Guilhem Le Desert, in Southern France
Winemaker: Blended by Jeff Welburn and Jean-Marc Descabannes (Importer)
About the winemaking: La Domitienne is the name of the ancient Roman road that once traveled through the Gaulle region of Narbonne connecting Italy to Spain. The wine reflects the whole spirit of the road as an ancient modern way of communication from the old-ancient vine growing areas to new modern winemaking techniques. This Rose comes from the 90-hectare estate located in the village of Saint Guilhem Le Desert, in Southern France. Its soil is composed of clay and limestone and the climate is hot and dry. Harvested in the cool of the night, some of the Grenache and Cinsault grapes have their juice extracted by free run, which gives body to the wine, and others are directly pressed, which adds freshness. The juice is fermented between 15 and 18 degrees centigrade in stainless steel tanks in order to conserve the maximum fruit. Although called “Grenache Gris”, the final blend is 70% Cinsault, 15% Grenache and 15% Syrah. Cinsault provides a lighter, softer and elegant touch to the wine along with more pronounced aromatics.
Tasting Notes: Delicate pale pink in color, with intense aromas of red berries, floral notes, and grapefruit mixed with peach and apricot. The palate develops richness, with a long delicious finish.
Price per bottle/case: $13.00 per btl/$140.40 per case
Suggested food pairings: Serve with barbecues, meat, simple or grilled fish, or as an aperitif, even dessert!
Region: Niederosterriech, Austria
Winemaker: Leopold Müller
About the Winemaker: Our family’s estate is located in the southern Krems valley and is managed by Stefan and Leopold Müller. The responsibilities are clearly structured: Stefan is the vineyard manager and Leopold is winemaker and sales manager. Our philosophy is to produce wine in harmony with nature; we want to honor the individual characteristics of each single vineyard. Considering these important factors, we give the grapes the highest chance to develop physiological ripeness, so that they grow to the perfect foundation for our typical white and red wines. Wine making is not something we do only for a living, rather it is the passion of our family to bring the fine aromas from the vineyard with a minimum of influence into the bottle. Our principle is simple: The basis of an excellent wine starts with perfect quality in the vineyard.
About the winemaking: For this particular wine, the grapes were harvested by the middle of October. In the cellar, the grapes were de-stemmed and introduced to a classic mash fermentation. After several hours the fermenting mash was pressed out and the rest of the fermentation was completed in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks. After fermentation the wine was racked and filtered before being bottled.
Tasting Notes: Bright rosy; fruity strawberry aroma in the nose; gentle berry notes on the palate; light and harmonic, fresh structure.
Price per bottle/case: $15.00 btl/$162 per case
Suggested food pairing: This wine is well suited for all dishes with poultry and ham. Also perfect as aperitif. A nice summer wine which brings a lot of fun, especially for warm summer nights.
Region: Corsica, France
Varietal: 100% Sciaccarellu
About the location: Corsica is a Mediterranean island that is a territorial collectivity of France, but is closer in proximity to Italy and grows mostly Italian grape varieties. This wine is from the Vin de Corse AOC. This region-wide designation and its sub-regions account for around 45% of all AOC wines produced in Corsica. Red and rosé wines here must include at least a 50% composition of Nielluccio, Sciacarello and Grenache. The white wines are composed primarily of Vermentino. This region includes many of Corsica's oldest established wineries that were founded in the 1960s on the island's eastern plains.
About the winemaking: Made of 100% Sciaccarellu. Direct pressurage at low temperature, aging on lees, and early bottling. Terra Nostra (Our Earth) is a symbol of passion and winemaker dedication to the work and the soil of his terrior.
Tasting Notes: The robe is lightly pink, the nose is slightly spicy with bright red fruits. Subtle in the mouth with good vivacity with a long finish.
Price per bottle/case: $14.00 per btl/ $151.20 per case
Suggested food pairing: Ideal accompaniment for grilled vegetables, grilled fish or shellfish, or as an aperitif.