“Spring is in the air, it’s the perfect time to enjoy Rosé in the sun. Marcus Bratter writes about some of the best… “
CHATEAU D’AIX ROSE, situated north of Aix-en-Provence, the vineyards of Maison Saint Aix grow Grenache, Cinsault, Syrah and Counoise, all perfect grapes that when blended produce a wonderful rosé. The vineyards have existed for over 130 years but recently the latest technology has been installed allowing the owners to produce what is fast becoming one of France’s most sought after rosés.
A light dry wine that carries the taste of summer in every glass, a bright pink colour, and a delicate balance of acid and ripe fruit gives Aix its character. A perfect wine to help celebrate the end of a sunny day, Ripe melon, currents, cherries and a note of spice.
From the Côtes de Provence region, Château Minuty has been producing wines since 1936 and been classified since 1955. Minuty is the classic rosé to be found on the best tables of the biggest yacht moored in the bay of St Tropez. Ideal for lounging on the beach of Ramatuelle, Minuty’s distinctive curvaceous bottle adds a touch of class to any summer event. Made essentially from Grenache grown on dry, calcium soil, picked manually the grapes are transported in small boxes with a double base to avoid any juice coming in contact with the grape skins and accidently starting fermentation in the warm southern climate. The owners have invested heavily in the latest technology to produce what is considered the ultimate Rosé de Provence. Hi-tech cooling systems keep control of the fermentation process producing a delicate wine with distinctive notes of peach, fresh hay and grapefruit.
I was sure, at first glance, that this was a Californian wine; in fact it comes from Chateau D’Esclans in the Provence area of the south of France. Situated in the hinterland between St Tropez and Cannes, with 44 hectares of vines, the property was bought in 2006 by Sacha Lichine, a well-known personage of French wines who grew up between America and his family vineyards Chateau Prieuré Lichine, Bordeaux. Since taking over the vineyard he has produced a range of distinctive wines, the rose, Whispering Angels, is made with Grenache, Rolle and Cinsault from the La Motte en Provence area. A pale pink colour with delicate cherry notes a true pleasure on a summer evening.
DOLE BLANCHE BESSE
To finish off my rosé descriptions I have to bring us back to Switzerland and to one of my favourite winemakers, Gerald Besse, right here in Martigny. Using red grapes lightly pressed to extract just a little colour he produces what is known as Dole Blanche, literally white Dole. Dole being a locale wine made from blending Pinot Noir and Gamay. A fresh fruity wine with notes of red berries and apricot, perfect for a sunny afternoon right here in Verbier.
So as we take the last spring-snow turns and start to think of summer breaks I hope one of these wines will make its way onto your table.