Author Archives: Chuck Kanski

Solo Vino fifth-annual rosé-tasting tickets go on sale – Minneapolis – Restaurants and Dining – The Hot Dish

Our secret is out…

Solo Vino fifth-annual rosé-tasting tickets go on sale – Minneapolis – Restaurants and Dining – The Hot Dish.

I hope they don’t screw it up!!!

Well another Rosé wine season is soon upon us. I was a bit concerned last fall with the reports of tough harvest conditions across most of Europe. I was afraid we would see below average wine quality as well as low rosé production. Well I’m happy to say that neither has happened, 2012 is looking, and tasting, like an incredible vintage.

In the last five years we have experienced an unbelievable surge in rosé consumption. The learning curve has been a long one but the party has finally begun. I’ve been stating for years that rosé wine suffers from a major ‘identity crisis’. Many consumers see this color and run. Depending on the generation the most common response is to quickly dismiss this wine as an overly sweet wine. I have witnessed many customer flash-backs to Mateus or Lancers and let me tell you some of their memories even made me cringe. Others may know this style of wine as the blush wine that is produced in large abundance by Beringer. There is nothing wrong with this product, the fact is it’s not a rosé wine…it’s a blush. To be clear!

Rosé wine = dry

Blush wine = sweet

Now a moment about the title of this piece. Several years ago Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie purchased a beautiful estate in the Provence region of France. This estate came with a winery named Chateau Miraval. Wonderful, classic producer of white, red and you guessed it…a rosé. The rosé wine was called Pink Floyd which is a reference to the group that laid down tracks for The Wall album in 1979 at the recording studio in the chateau. This wine was AMAZING!!! An almost perfect, dedicated style rosé which is what Provence is know for and was considered the benchmark for most producers. This year is the beginning of a new era for Chateau Miraval, the Jolie-Pitt era. Over the last few years they have become close friends with the Perrin family of Chateau Beaucastel, a very well established producer of Southern Rhone wines, in particular their Chateauneuf-du-Pape. This years Chateau Miraval Rosé is the result of a new collaboration between Jolie-Pitt and the Perrin family. Now I know that the Perrin family make great wine but the other end of the equation is the concern. There was nothing wrong with continuing on, status quo, with the Pink Floyd rosé. In the wine industry one is considered a veteran wine-maker after ten vintages. Reports of the Jolie-Pitt involvement is mostly in design and final blend. For the sake of a wonderful rosé wine I hope that’s the fact.

Chuck Kanski


Cline Mourvedre Rosé 2011 (Contra Costa)

Mourvedre has to be approached carefully, because often the aromas of Mourvedre will have an earthy edge that confuses people when they expect the hedonistic raspberry of so many wines. This rosé has that perfect amount of earthiness, with hints of dried leaves and loam soil combined with the ultra-fresh raspberry and black fruit zest of a great rosé. Bright, lively, bone dry, and finishes with a lift of acidity akin to pink lemonade (without sugar). In other words, absolutely gulp-able and endlessly enjoyable. Have with grilled shrimp on a summer evening for a match made in wine heaven.
Wine review by Jason Kallsen, March 2012

La Valentina Rosato 2011 (Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo)

Tangy strawberry scents are as fresh as they are alluring. On the palate this rounds out into a textural rosé akin to strawberry creams and at the same time, this is lively, fresh, easy, and engaging. This 100% Montepulciano rosé is from one of the newest DOC regions in Abruzzo.
Wine review by Nicholas Livingston, May 2012

Alois Lageder Lagrein Rosato 2011 (Alto Adige)

Here’s a rosé to wipe the memory of all skeptics. At once floral and freshly fruity but herbal, curlicue and scented, this Lagrein is a dream of a rosé for all these tensions and all the better yet for a gentle bitter note that lends a welcomed edge to the finish. This is outstanding with rabbit terrine but in the glass I’m now hatching plans to try this with smoked fish for stream side luncheons and pâtés for the late afternoon snack. Some wines evoke the foods to accompany them and make one water at the mouth.
Wine review by Nicholas Livingston, May 2012

Domaine des Carteresses 2011 (Tavel)

(50% Grenache + 15% Mourvedre + 13% Clairette + 12% Picpoul + 10% Syrah) Tavel terroir = an outstanding rosé from a land devoted to making serious full bodied rosé. A rich nose full of fruit (cherries and plums) opens onto a vinous palate that in terms of body and texture is more akin to the red end of the spectrum. This is more a Gigli tenor than the soprano rosés whose number are great but whose wines never plumb and penetrate and linger with such clear, resonant character.
Wine review by Nicholas Livingston, May 2012

Caves de Vignerons de Saumur Cabernet de Saumur 2011 (Loire)

Sweet creamy strawberries greet the nose and take the scents of baked strawberry rhubarb. Snappy polish awes the palate with a minty berry character to the palate that reveals that Cabernet Franc is high on its horse and riding splendidly. This is refreshing and playful and another outstanding rosé this season.
Wine review by Nicholas Livingston, May 2012

Chateau L’Ermitage 2011 (Costieres de Nimes)

50% Syrah, 30% Grenache, 20% Mourvèdre
Ah, this is a rosé that just calls out for a garden party! Here’s just the rosé for the deck or picnic or any other sun soaked afternoon. Fresh berries, bright texture, and an engaging balance of fresh fruit washing over the palate, this is a quaffing beauty to slake any thirst.
Wine review by Nicholas Livingston, May 2012

Domaine du Dragon Cuvée Prestige 2011 (Cotes du Provence)

Cinsault, Syrah, Mourvèdre, Grenache and Vermentino combine to great effect. Clean penetrating scents of red currants and citrus that carry on over the palate with a fresh blooming floral nuance and high note of blooming mustard.  As refreshing as can be with a delicious aromatic quality about the mouth that is polished, round and compelling in a tongue curling sort of way, this rosé embodies yet another wondrous vintage one that brought polish, lift and great character and at 12.5%  we all ought to thank Provence!
Wine review by Nicholas Livingston, May 2012

Lieu dit Cocagne 2011 (Coteaux du Vendômois)

100% Pineau d’Aunis
Fresh, grassy grapefruit lifesaver nose carries through in the mouth with ruby red pink grapefruit juice without even a hint of pith or even a bite unbalanced acidity –no this is just a tender loving gnaw on the shoulder of one’s palate. This is playful and youthful with a little baby aspirin nuance that gives it just the edge to make this all the better with plenty of polish –so much so that one’s left licking  their teeth and tonguing their cheek –another rosé to convert skeptics –even the most cynical. By the by, for the history buffs, Pineau d’Aunis –sometimes better known as Chenin Noir, was the favorite of Henry Plantagenet and is a lovely variety unique to the Loire and is charming for a minerality that persists through all its high toned fruit.
Wine review by Nicholas Livingston, May 2012