Published on 31-05-2022
Rosé Three Ways
There’s just something inherently relaxing about the idea of rosé.

The word itself conjures images of seaside strolls, grilled seafood, and vacation vibes.

It’s easy to sip, easy to pair, and easy to shop for, as most domestic rosé is simply labeled “rosé.” It’s even become a grab-and-go item available in cans, boxes, and bottles with corks, pop-tops and screw-caps. The perfect libation for picnics, cookouts, lunch dates and beachfront sipping in jaunty hats, rosé is here to stay.
Long gone are the days when sweet, sticky rosé made from Zinfandel dominated the pink wine sector. These days, dry, elegant rosé is made across the globe using a myriad of varietals and winemaking techniques.
From blending whites and reds to saignée, where a small portion of the wine is removed after a few hours of maceration, the sky’s the limit for vintners when it comes to producing rosé, and wine consumers are drinking it all up, literally.
Recently, I was fortunate enough to catch up with Karen MacNeil, author of the award-winning book, THE WINE BIBLE, about the world of rosé and how this magical pink-hued elixir has secured its footing at the forefront of the wine scene. Here’s how she weighed in:

AM: Do you have any suggestions for a starter rosé? I'm thinking of diehard, dry red wine drinkers who’d usually run the other way when offered a glass containing pink wine.
KMN: The beauty of rosé is that it’s so easy. It’s a wine for drinking, not thinking. So wine lovers can “start” anywhere. That said, I am especially fond of Provençal rosé because Provence is the “mother ship” when it comes to rosé and also because Provençal rosé is bone-dry and crisp, and therefore terrific with just about every food.

AM: Any basic advice for pairing rosé?
KMN: Pairing with rosé is also easy. Just imagine any dish that has a southern French “spin,” and you are set. Also, a little-known fact: rosé is one of the few wines that goes really well with garlic, which is why the French drink it with aioli and bouillabaisse.

AM: What was the first rosé that left an impression on you?
KMN: The rosés that I first got to know were either from southern France or Spain. (Spain, in fact, makes loads of excellent rosé for a song). The other rosés I LOVE are rosé Champagnes. Expensive but sensational. Marc Hebrart is a favorite producer. Rosé Champagne with roast chicken (or any poultry) can’t be beat.
AM: Where might vintners in California look for inspiration when it comes to producing excellent rosé?
KMN: California winemakers often want to make rosé out of grapes that, in my opinion, are too tannic. A rosé of Cabernet or Merlot can come off as too coarse. Rosés made from Mediterranean varieties — Grenache, Carignan, and Cinsaut, often work better.

You can read more of MacNeil’s thoughts on rosé and other wines at WineSpeed.com. In the interim, here are three of my top picks for amazing rosé along with three recipes for a bit of fun in the kitchen.
I hope you’ll enjoy tasting, pairing, and perhaps even learning a bit as you go. Whether you’re serving burrata, crabmeat, grilled sausages, poultry, or prosciutto, rosé loves food. As a matter of fact, Julia Child said, “Rosé can be served with anything.” I’ll not disagree. Put on some music, open a bottle or two, and enjoy the simple pleasures of sipping and prepping a palate-pleasing repast.



Rose and Scampi

Weeknight Shrimp Scampi

• 5 tbsp butter
• 3 tbsp high-quality olive oil
• 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
• 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
• 1 pound shrimp
• 1/2 cup dry white wine
• 1/2 cup chopped parsley
• Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium flame, then add the garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook for about 1 minute.
Add the shrimp and toss to coat. Cook the shrimp until the shrimp turn pink (approximately 2-3 minutes.)
Transfer the shrimp to a plate and cover, then add the wine to the pan and cook for 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and put the shrimp back into the pan. Toss to combine it all and add the parsley, salt, and black pepper, to taste.
Serve immediately.



Rescue Dog Sparkling Rose

Rescue Dog Wines
Méthode Champenoise Sparkling Rosé

Pear and Apples. Exquisite ultra-fine bubbles. Very Dry. Méthode Champenoise. Good with almost any food, especially hors d'oeuvres, tapas, baguette and butter, raw oysters, caviar, giant towers of seafood!$27.99/750ml


Baileyana Brut Rose

2018 Baileyana Brut Rosé
Fresh and fruity and with pronounced aromas of raspberry, strawberry and candied fruit. The nose is complemented with flavors of ruby red grapefruit, cherry and a hint of hazelnut. The balanced structure and richness in flavor create a beautifully refreshing wine. $50/750ml


• • •


Watermelon Salad and Rose

Savory Summer Watermelon Salad

• 1/4 c. high-quality olive oil
• 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
• 4 c. cubed seedless watermelon
• 2 medium cucumbers, chopped
• 1 c. crumbled Cotija cheese
• 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
• 1/4 cup coarsely chopped basil
• Pinch of sea salt

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes.
Garnish with more chopped basil.




Seagrape Cellars Pinot Gris Rose

Seagrape Cellars
2019 Pinot Gris Rosé
Hibbits Ranch Vineyard, Sta. Rita Hills

Also known as “orange wine” due to the skin contact with these beautiful russet-colored berries prior to fermentation, the soft salmon color beckons, inviting a swirl. Delicate aromas of wild strawberry and almond blossom lead to a crisp and zesty palate full of citrus peel, summer watermelon, and raspberry, overlaid with crisp minerally notes and a hint of garden herb.$28/750ml


Trefethen Family Vineayrds S.I.N. Rose

Trefethen Family Vineyards
2021 S.I.N. Rosé 2021 “Summer in Napa”

This S.I.N. Rosé of Pinot Noir is enticing with aromas of fresh watermelon, peach, strawberry, and orange peel. On the palate, this wine is full and bright with flavors of red grapefruit, strawberry, and lychee with lively acidity and a mouthwatering finish that can only be enhanced by enjoying a “Summer In Napa.”$30/750ml

• • •

BBQ Tempeh and Rose

Baked BBQ Tempeh

• 2 tbsp high-quality olive oil
• 2 cups BBQ sauce
• 2 (8 oz.) packs of tempeh    
• Freshly chopped parsley

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Remove the tempeh from packaging and cut crosswise into 1/4" slices.
Coat the bottom of a baking dish with olive oil, then 1/2 of the BBQ sauce. Place tempeh in a single layer over it and top with remaining sauce. Bake for 20-25 minutes.
Garnish with parsley and serve warm.



Bread and Butter Napa Valley Rose

Bread and Butter Wines Napa Valley Rosé
This lively rosé showcases a beautiful color and an intensity of juicy fruit and fresh floral notes. Flavors of fresh strawberries, watermelon, and red grapefruit and rose petals are cherished. Soft, dry and crisp with balanced acidity and sweetness, this wine will be your summertime favorite.  $30/750ml


Costa De Oro Pinot Noir Rose, Santa Maria Valley

Costa De Oro Winery
2020 Pinot Noir Rosé, Santa Maria Valley

This lovely Provence-style rosé is made from 100% estate-grown Pinot Noir grapes. Using both neutral oak and stainless steel, this rosé is light and bright with notes of honeydew, orange blossom, and a crisp, refreshing finish. Very food friendly or delicious on its own.           $30/750ml





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