Thursday, 28 August 2008

A Rosé by any other name would taste as...

Another of the wonderful reasons for living in France is to indulge, to join in, in the French love of Rosé wines... I have heard over the years the scoffing of British and American friends who have laughed and jeered at this odd melange, this blending of red wine and white wine.

Eh? What was that again? A mix of white and red?

"Yes," said Bernie, "its just a blend isn't it?"

No matey it ain't...there are whole vineyards dedicated to the growing of grapes just for rosé wines and they can be delightfully refreshing, deliciously addictive; and with a good lunch the prefect accompaniment; they can be powerful but still light. Why, Tavel is a Rhone wine, an appellation in its own right, and is a deep colour, but still a rosé.

"Oh my love that stuff...its Zinfandel, right? My Mom drinks a lot of that stuff. Yuk. Californian cheap crap." She said.

The Provence and Côte de Provence rosés are perfumed and flowery and light and go down beautifully during the warm summer months. There are though, some that do not. One such is Les Gradins, a 2006 Syrah.

As more and more viticulteurs turn to producing rosé wines, there come to market some insipid wines...

Now I love the Syrah grape as much as the next man or woman...Crozes Hermitage can be sublime... The Romans introduced the Syrah grape here so it is said, from Italy but it comes originally from the middle east, or at least from somewhere further east; it is grown in the Antipodes as the Shiraz and some Aussie wines are wonderful, so I'm told, but having lived here in France for several years I have become accustomed to a more subtle taste and I find the Aussie wines in particular rather like drinking a heavy alcoholic fruit juice. I don't have the palate for it, that's all.

But I digress.... someone in the Côte Rhodaniens had a brilliant idea or so he thought and they produced the most insipid rosé I have ever had the misfortune to inbibe. Agreed it is only a couple of euros, say a few euros, okay three and a bit, so what's that in real money - less than three quid? But even then. Friends who came to dinner last Friday were served it as an aperitif and we had difficulty finishing the bottle. We are all English, after all. We rarely put a cork back into a bottle however bad we think it is. But this was bad.

But I wanted to share this and the photograph, on this post to allow any and all my reader to avoid it at all cost.

It just ain't worth it. Even at €1.

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