The Significance of Rose Wine
No doubt this slight fixation of the past few days has been caused by the onset of spring. The fact is, I am so in love with the pink drink that I force myself to ignore it during the three winter months. If I didn’t install this forced blindness in my mind, I’d surely ruin the significance of Rose.
There are some very solid associations I make to rose that have turned it from simply being the best wine anyone could drink to the seductress it has become: friends, heat, white linen clothing, big brimmed hats towering over feminine bodies, empty glasses buzzing with bees, salmon, warm nights and lingering guests.
In America, Rose has been and remains a tough sell among wine drinkers. Too many associated it with "White Zinfandel," which of course it usually is not, though it can be. That said, there has been a marked increase over he past five years in the consumption of pink, and this has, happily, led more American wineries to take the leap and produce a bottle.
Many of the best Roses come from France, and particularly the south and Southwest of France. The French and Europeans have never been asked to drink pink sweet as Americans had been when White Zinfandel hit our market. Euroquaffers see it as the summer drink to be swallowed liberally for reason of satisfaction and to slake a thirst.
There really are not GREAT makers of Rose, with perhaps the exception of Domaine Tempier. That is to say, very few wineries are known for making "world class Rose". Some do aspire to this. But it’s a dead end pursuit. Frankly, there never will be a "world class rose". There is nothing complex about the wine. The techniques for making it probably assure this. But moreover, it’s what Rose does to the drinker that assures it will never be a great wine. The wine, particularly when consumed liberally among friends during the rising temperatures of spring and summer, acts to strip away the desire to describe, consider and evaluate.
I’m going to drink Rose Today. I’m not sure which. Many of the 2004s are coming into the stores and shops. They all cost around $15-20. I’m going to buy a case, in fact, and put it away for the month of April. Then I’ll get another case for the month of May. Then I’ll get another case for the month of June. Then I’ll get another case for…