Wednesday, March 21, 2018

The Rose Invasion by Philip S. Kampe

                                                   The Rose Invasion
                     Did you ever feel like you were on Rose overload before?
                                               Rose has many shades....
                                                My first rose was Mateus (Portugal)
                                           Loire Valley wine made with Pouilly-Fume
                    Languedoc rose ade with 80 year old vines (Grenache)
                                                 A first for me, rose Pinot Grigio
                                                 Fizzy sparkling from Piedmont

If you were in the metro NYC area this week, you may understand my thoughts. All of the great wine importers and distributors did their thing. From TEdwards to Martin Scott to Verity to Winebow and the nor’easter, Jerome Selections tasting.

Rose wines from all over the world were flowing. Sparkling, still,any form that rose was bottled was front and center this week.

I suggest wines to three clients in the metro area, a new wine shop opening near my old stamping grounds, the Wine Library and a few out of the metro area.

What’s wonderful about the industry is that an imported wine from your home area can be distributed in other states by other distributors.

What I got out of the numerous rose tastings was the sense that the rose wine category has found its place in our world. As a matter of fact, both Rose and Prosecco  have succeeded in an upsurge in market share, enabling them to larger and more obvious shelf space and attention by wine merchants.

As a journalist in the field, and a wine taster and judge, honestly, I find it a bit more difficult to evaluate the rose category as compared to other categories. Maybe it’s the freshness of the wines or the varietals, but, often I am a bit lost in this huge field.

Terroir seems to play a big factor in roses. At the tastings, roses came from all possible terroirs-South Africa, NY state, Spain, France, Austria, Italy, Australia and so on. Get the drift? All terroirs work…its just which ones work the best?

Historically, the rose market meant the south of France-Provence, Languedoc and Rousillion. That is not the case anymore.

Today, rose, known as Rosado in Spanish speaking countries and Rosato in Italy, has universal appeal. Iconic Mateus, from Portugal, was my first contact with rose.

Rose incorporates its color from the grape skins, but much less then to qualify as a red wine. The pink color chart (see attached photo) can range from pale to a near purple, depending on how long skin contact takes place. The color can also come from blending grapes or the saignee process which involves making rose as a by product of red wines.

Enough education…

Choosing a rose is up to you….my loose guidelines are to explore the grapes that you like and see if a rose wine is made from that grape.

The attached photos contain several well known varietals that have made rose their home..….

Also, it makes sense to look for the distributor or importer whose name appears on the bottle. Or you can search their website for roses….or just ask your wine merchant what rose wines do they carry from the merchants below…

Enjoy the journey....and look for Chiaretto, a rose from Lake Garda, in the Veneto region...

The list of top rose distributors are:
Martin Scott Wines  
Verity Wine Partners

Philip S. Kampe

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