There is a great scene in the wonderfully entertaining film, Legally Blonde where the ‘pink’ heroine Elle Woods is standing in a computer store scantily dressed as a bunny rabbit purchasing a laptop. Spurned by her ex and mocked by her fellow Harvard students, her purchase represents her first step to be taken seriously.
As you might expect, the film sees Miss Glitzy Pink reign supreme and leaves those that dismissed her looking suitably foolish.
Pink wine (I do prefer the term rosé) is increasingly popular and whilst it’s not aiming for a spot in the ‘fine and rare wine’ section of your local wine merchant it is a shame that despite its success there’s a lingering view that the wines are little more than vinous frippery.
Quality rosé is no different from white and red wines in that it is borne from ripe, healthy grapes and attentive wine making. Stylistically there’s a bit of everything. Some are made to taste slightly sweet with generous jammy fruits whilst others are drier with a little more elegance and complexity. In short, there’s something for everyone, whatever your taste or the occasion. One of the best of my most recent rosé experiences was the South African Newton Johnson Felicité 2010 (£8.25 www.2poundstreet.com). It’s a blend of the red Syrah grape with Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon and is dry in style without any shortage of crunchy red berry fruits and just the tiniest hint of spice.
I drank it with a selection of cold dishes: salami; mushroom, rocket and Parmesan salad and some cheeses too and it worked a treat. An hour or so later the bottle wasn’t quite finished and another couple of glasses were eked out with friends who’d popped in for an after dinner drink. Terrific.
Domaine Félines Jourdan is a Southern French estate that has long been on my ‘favourites’ list because of their imperious Picpoul de Pinet and so I was pleased to see that The Wine Society (www.thewinesociety.com) has started listing a rosé from them. It’s made from Cinsault, Grenache and Syrah and is a mere £5.25 a bottle. It’s a juicier wine than the Felicité and arguably more of a lunchtime / picnic tipple but no less satisfying for that.
The Oxford Wine Company (www.oxfordwine.co.uk) list the extremely impressive Portuguese Quinta de la Rosa wines and I have long-since admired their Dou Rosa Rosado (£11.55) that is certainly a pink with top honours. Of the three recommendations here, it’s the wine with the most finesse and breadth of flavour; it combines summer berry fruit with a lovely backbone of minerality, a touch of spice and terrific length too. Surprisingly successful partnered with the likes of roasted monkfish or, more simply, with a plate of fresh prawns. It’s time to get in the queue for some smashing rosé wine . . . the bunny outfit is optional, but not recommended!