WINE NOTES: Rosés are the real thing this summer

Robert Moyes looks at both domestic and international offerings for August

Monday Magazine wine columnist Robert Moyes

Summer’s here, so it’s time to think pink!

Rosé sets a patio mood, and let’s start the party with the always-delightful Hester Creek Rosé ($22). Made in Oliver from older Cabernet Franc vines, this vibrantly coloured, off-dry Rosé is blessed with strawberry-rhubarb aromas, while its flavour profile is a lush and charming blend of strawberry, black cherry, and cranberry. Lively acidity and good balance make this an ideal choice as either an aperitif or at the dinner table with lightly-herbed barbecued salmon.

In nearby Summerland, Dirty Laundry’s reputation for crafting excellent white wines is complemented by the success of their Hush Rosé, which has become their top seller. Made from a blend of Merlot, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc, Hush is a refreshingly perfect way to end the workday. Crisp but off-dry, its fruity aromas lead to a juicy palate of red berries, watermelon, and a lick of spice. A fine deal for $21.

Spain knows a thing or three about “Rosado,” and Espinal (a member of the Familia Castaño) makes a fine one. Made from 100 per cent Monastrell and hailing from the Yecla region of southeastern Spain, this nearly dry wine is charmingly fruity but balanced by a vibrant acidity that lifts its dominant flavours of rhubarb, strawberry, cherry, and melon. A hint of citrus carries through on the long finish. At $13.90, this is a bargain (sold at Vessel, on Oak Bay Avenue).

And staying with Spain but shifting gears to finish with a yummy red, the Pata Negra Tempranillo Gran Reserva 2009 ($22 and available at Everything Wine) is produced in the south-central Valdepeñas region. Made in the traditional Rioja style using French oak, this mellow, flavour-rich charmer treats the palate to a cascade of plum, raisin, and berry fruit flavours. With its hedonistic mouthfeel and long finish, this is notable value at $22.

(All prices include tax.)

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