Best Rosé Wines for Spring | 2021 Edition

With its pretty pink hue and accessible palate, rosé is a warm-weather staple with undeniable appeal. Rosé wine has grown strongly, from 8% of total wine sales to 10% from 2002 to 2017, in a market for wine that has been otherwise flat overall. Last year, sales of rosé in the US grew by an amazing 40% according to Nielsen. and has gone from beach bag essential to mainstay on serious wine lists. Today, options on the American market are vast, with profiles from floral and fresh to earthy and herbaceous.

One of our favorite things about rosé is its accessibility; its average price point is much lower than red or white wine, making them great case-buys for enjoying on picnics or serving at summer barbecues. With a diverse assortment of punchy, exciting, and just plain delicious wines to choose from, it’s hard to go wrong with any bottle on this list.

https://merchantofwine.com/collections/rose

Best Rosé Wine to Drink

1. Domaine Poli, Niellucciu Rosé IGP Ile de Beauté, Corsica, France, 2020

In 2005, Eric Poli bought 7.4 acres of old-vine Nielluccio and Vermentino in the heart of Patrimonio, the oldest and arguably best appellation on this mountainous Mediterranean island. He also bought 108 acres outside of Linguizzetta, his hometown on the east coast of the island.

Today, Eric Poli manages Clos Alivu's 11.7 acres, the 86.5 acres of his wife's family estate (Clos Teddi), and the 108 acres of IGP Ile de Beaute grapes he planted ten years ago near his family's estate. Eric makes the wines for all three brands.

Protected by the maritime influences of the Golfe de Saint-Florent, vines cultivated on the limestone soils of Patrimonio’s hillsides rarely require treatments of any kind, so Eric’s practices are essentially organic (though without certification). Nielluciu, genetically linked to Sangiovese, thrives in this ideally situated inlet at the north end of the island, and when yields are limited, results in wines with more freshness and finesse than those made from its Tuscan cousin. Also, the fresh, aromatic whites made from Vermentino rival the best of Sardinia, Corsica’s neighbor to the south.

Grape / Blend: Rosé Blend

Origin: Corsica, France

Winemaker's Tasting Notes
Penetratingly pungent herbal scents including thyme and lavender link up with white peach and pink grapefruit on a luscious and refreshingly juicy palate, leading to a long finish replete with reprises of the high-toned and pungent herbal essences that already lent the nose such striking distinction.

2. Château Routas, Rosé, Couteaux Varois En Provence, France, 2020

The sustainable farmed estate abounds in the agricultural diversity that is key to vine health. The 290 hectares encompass wheat fields and olive trees, and black truffles stud the earth. Red poppies give way to brilliant yellow sunflowers, and in the fall, the surrounding forests yield abundant mushrooms-cepes (porcini), fragile girolles, and morels. Helpful insects play their part in keeping the vines disease-free.

The terrain is punctuated by a stunning geological anomaly, the 270 meter-deep Infernet Hole (Devil’s Hole), a canyon thought to have been created by a meteor collision. The hole is a favourite refuge of the local wild boars, which are unfortunately, a little too fond of the Chateau Routas grapes!

As in all the best properties, the Chateau Routas soil varies dramatically, resulting in small vineyards that are often unusually shaped. Some plots are red as crushed brick, while others are of crumbly grey limestone mixed with bright red stones that bleach in the hot summer sun. The elevation is among Provence’s highest, providing cool nights that slow the ripening of the grapes, contributing complexity, and dictating harvests that are up to a month later than those nearer the coast.

Grape / Blend: 46% Cinsault, 30% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon

Origin: Couteaux Varois En Provence, Cote de Provence, France

Winemaker's Tasting Notes
The younger vines are fermented with Lalvin Opale which brings out the ripe peach and redcurrant fruit, the classic Peach Melba of cooler climate Grenache rosé. 

A touch of depth and structure is contributed by a small percentage of old vine Cabernet Sauvignon and mature Syrah. The Syrah.

Both fermented at a cool 14C in inox with Lalvin Okay which serves to emphasise the body and weight of the fruit, which, in the Cabernet gives a touch of red currant fruit and mineral structure to balance the fruity loral character of the Cinsault and Grenache.

3.  Terra Nostra, Sciaccarellu Rosé Corse, Corsica, France, 2020

Corsica,  "the Mountain in the sea" provides exceptional conditions for wine making... The high mountains and the sea breezes from the mediterranéan sea propose cool climate conditions.

Terra Nostra, Our Earth, is the symbol of passion, dedication and respect of our soil and terroir. This wine, as an A.O.P. (Appellation d’Origine Protégée) provides the best of the Corsican wines personality...through the selection of specific terroirs but also endemic varietals such as Sciaccarellu.

Sciacca, in corsican language means "Crispy".

Located on the east coast of the Island, facing Italy, the slopes of the vineyard are perfectly oriented.Viticulturist are involved in a environmental friendly agriculture... Recently certify H.V.E. (High environment Value).

Grape / Blend: 100% Sciaccarellu

Origin: Corsica, France

Tasting Notes
The rosé is nicely pink, the nose is slightly spicy with great aromas of little red berries. Crispy and fresh, the palate has a beautiful sensation of a smooth and delicate wine.

4. Chateau D'Esclans Whispering Angel Rosé, Côtes de Provence, France, 2020

Château d’Esclans, a magical property, is situated in the heart of Provence, northeast of St. Tropez overlooking La Vallée d’Esclans (the Esclans Valley) with the Mediterranean coast in the faint distance. The vision of Sacha Lichine (Founder) with his acquisition of the Château in 2006 was to create the greatest rosés in the world igniting the “Rosé Renaissance”.

Patrick Léon (Founding Winemaker) became an essential part of the project bringing his many years of international winemaking experience to Château d’Esclans. He introduced new and innovative winemaking techniques to Provence which revolutionized the styles of rosés being produced from this appellation. This led to the creation of a world class rosé portfolio from Château d’Esclans including Whispering Angel, Rock Angel, Les Clans, and Garrus: a new generation of rosés characterized by elegance, depth, richness and complexity. Today, Patrick’s son Bertrand currently leads the winemaking team following in the footsteps of his father.

Sold in over 100 countries, these rosés are enjoyed globally from London to the Hamptons, and from St. Barth’s to the Swiss Alps. Whether you are relaxing by the beach, on a yacht, or in the mountains during “après ski”, Château d’Esclans rosés are a light and refreshing accompaniment to any destination. Whispering Angel is today’s worldwide reference for Provence rosé.

"In the Esclans Valley angels whisper. If you drink this wine, you might hear them… If you visit us, you might see them.” - Sacha Lichine

Grape / Blend: Grenache, Syrah, Cinsault and Carignan

Origin: Côtes de Provence, France

Winemaker's Tasting Notes

Whispering Angel is today’s worldwide reference for Provence rosé. Made from Grenache, Cinsault and Rolle (Vermentino), its pale color is pleasing to the eye and draws one in. The rewarding taste profile is full and lush while being bone dry with a smooth finish.

Highly approachable and enjoyable with a broad range of cuisine.

92 Points - James Suckling
Very pale apricot-pink color. Delicate aromas of sliced apple, pink grapefruit, peach, cream and stones follow through to a medium body and crisp acidity. Deliciously creamy and smooth. Drink and enjoy.

5.  Ultimate Provence "UP" Urban Provence Rosé, Côtes de Provence, France, 2018 (90 pts Vinous)

In the oak forest countryside on the outskirts of St Tropez sits Ultimate Provence. This is the estate where authentic Provence wine making uses Syrah blends to create it’s bold and spicy rosés. Named Urban Provence and shortened to UP, it’s the perfect lead wine for such a unique estate. This is a unique rosé that packs something different, it challenges the norm with a respectful nod to tradition. The vineyard is characterised by shallow soil, laid on a waterproof subsoil sandstone slab. This excellent terroir is nourished with a natural compost of oak leaves and vine stalks.

The Ultimate Provence vineyard spans 100 acres around the town of La Garde Freinet, at the northern foot of Notre Dame des Anges chapel. Set in wild countryside and bordered by a vast evergreen oak forest, the vineyard is characterised by shallow soil, laid on a waterproof subsoil sandstone slab. This excellent terroir is nourished with a natural compost of oak leaves and vine stalks. The plots are marked out with grassy areas.

Grape / Blend: Grenache Noir (30%) Cinsault (30%) Syrah (30%) Rolle (10%)

Origin: AOP Côtes de Provence, France

Winemakers' Tasting Notes
The spice notes from the Syrah provides a dry, white pepper characteristic across the entire palate. A touch of Rolle gives great acidity and brightness that lends notes of winter citrus, spice with a warming finish.

“EXTREMELY PALE, VIVID PINK. BRIGHT, RACY AND FOCUSED ON THE NOSE, DISPLAYING FRESH RED BERRY AND ORANGE ZEST SCENTS AND A SUAVE FL ORAL OVERTONE. DRY AND LIGHT ON ITS FEET, OFFERING TANGY REDCURRANT AND STRAWBERRY FLAVORS AND A TANGERINE QUALITY THAT BUILDS AS THE WINE OPENS UP. 90 POINTS” — JOSH REYNOLDS - VINOUS (2017 VINTAGE)

Interested in learning more about Rosé wine? Attend our upcoming STARS of Rosé event!  Click here to register.

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