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Rosé de Romanin

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Les Baux-de-Provence 2013, Château Romanin ($28.50, 11542041)
Biodynamically and organically farmed Grenache (47%), Syrah (29%), Counoise (18%) and Mourvèdre (6%) from vines between 18 and 57 years old. Manually harvested. The whole clusters are slowly pressed. The must is chilled to 10°C and allowed to clarify by settling before being racked into temperature-controlled (18-20°C) stainless steel tanks for alcoholic fermentation. Malolactic fermentation is blocked. Matured six months on the lees with regular stirring. Reducing sugar: 1.4 g/l. 13.5% ABV. Quebec agent: Divin Paradis.
Farty at first but after 10 minutes or so an appealing, nuanced mix of red berries and peach, stones and herbes de Provence. The first sip reveals an elegant and balanced wine. The fruit is light but clear and sustained, backed by minerals, shifting from sweet-seeming to savoury as it moves through the mouth, textured by fine acidity and just a hint of tannins and, as the wine approaches room temperature, a touch of alcoholic heat. A thread of bitterness winds through the finish, while the unmistakable fragrance of strawberry lingers long after. A beautiful bottle and an excellent pairing for cedar-planked salmon topped before grilling with a paste made from orange and lemon zest, fresh Provençal herbs, olive oil and a smidgen of garlic. (Buy again? Imperatively.)

One of the best of this year’s crop of rosés at the SAQ, a wine that perfectly demonstrates that rosés have a raison d’être, that they are indeed a category unto themselves, one deserving of equal status with whites and reds. Carafe a half hour before serving. The long cork may indicate that its makers think it’s ageable; I wouldn’t hesitate to cellar it a year or two.

There’s quite a bit of this around (at least on Montreal island), so rumours of the good rosé season’s demise are slightly exaggerated. Other recommended rosés still widely available – possibly because many shoppers can’t bring themselves to spend upwards of $25 on a bottle of pink wine – include: Bandol 2013, Domaine de Souviou ($25.10, 12200798), Sierra Foothills 2013, Vin gris d’Amador, Terre Rouge ($25.40, 11629710), Patrimonio 2013, Domaine d’E Croce, Yves Leccia ($26.20, 11900821) and Corse Figari 2014, Clos Canarelli ($34.00, 11917666).

Written by carswell

August 3, 2015 at 18:30

2 Responses

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  1. Good news. I’ll be at Lac Leamy this week where rumour has it they have not one but two of the rosés you enumerate. I just polished off a Vin gris d’Amador this afternoon, so while it’s nice to know there’s a glut somewhere, scant supplies here are neither being replenished nor exaggerated!!


    August 3, 2015 at 22:10

    • I should have checked the off-island inventories before making a sweeping statement (have accordingly revised the original post). The situation is indeed much direr in your neck of the woods. It does, however, give you another excuse to visit Montreal…


      August 3, 2015 at 23:51

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