Prime Time for Pink: Summer 2022 Rosé Round-up Part 1



Update, August 12

I've just added two more wines to this, so it's now 12 appetite-whetting rosés. The additions, Ramón Bilbao Rosado and Señorio de Sarría Viñedo Cinco are both Spanish, from the neighbouring regions of Rioja and Navarra, and both are based on Garnacha, but they couldn't be more different in style. I haven't yet found a UK stockist of the 2021 vintage of the Señorio de Sarría, but look out for it if you're in Spain. Scroll down.


Ten appetite-whetting rosés rounded up from seven countries, both hemispheres and a wonderful array of grape varieties, although none from Provence and the south of France because they're in the next round-up, which will be coming shortly.


Two things to remember: rosés often go very well with food and most need chilling well. In hot weather, you might need to chill your wine glasses too. If you haven't got space in the fridge, swirl an ice cube or two with a splash of water around the inside of the glass briefly. And hold glasses by the stem to stop your hands warming the wine – it's amazing what a difference it makes.


The wines below are all dry unless stated and they're listed in descending order of scores (93 and above for gold; 89 and above for silver; 85 and above for bronze).

L’exuberance Rosé du Clos Cantenac 2021, Bordeaux, France

Pure Merlot aged in a mixture of stainless steel and large oak barrels. Very pale salmon. Enticing blossom, peach, spice and red berry aromas and an elegant, gossamer-textured palate. Red fruit, subtle smoke and herb notes and a long, dry finish with an energising grapefruit lift. A lovely wine. 12.5%. Empty bottle weight: 626g

92

£19.80, Hedonism (magnum £39.80)


Arbousset Tavel Rosé 2021, France

Deep pink Grenache, Syrah, Cinsault blend (60:20:20) from Tavel in the southern Rhône. As exuberant on the nose and palate as in colour. Bold, juicy strawberry fruit, good weight without being heavy, smooth but with a little bit of attractive chewiness, and finishing on a fresh, orangey note. A good rosé for food (went well with roast aubergine wedges with cumin seeds, stuffed vine leaves, chorizo and cold roast lamb). Good value. 13.5%

91

£12, Tesco


Denis Jamain Les Chatillons Reuilly 2020, Loire, France

Pale salmon colour from the natural pigmentation of Pinot Gris. Blossomy and peachy with a little smoke, white pepper, grapefruit and straw. Silky soft, fresh, medium bodied. Delicious and food-friendly: can take a touch of spice. 13%. Empty bottle weight: 554g

91

£15.95, Berry Bros & Rudd


Kutjevo Rosé 2020, Slavonia, Croatia

A pale rosé made from an usual blend of Pinot Noir and Zweigelt and now reduced in price in a mixed case. A recent Wine of the Week – click to see. 12%. Empty bottle weight: 696g.

88

£14.49, or £8.99 in any mix of 12, Laithwaites


Ramón Bilbao Rosado 2021, Rioja, Spain

Crisp, pale, delicately perfumed and refreshingly dry with soft peach and redcurrant fruit. Made from 85% Garnacha and 15% Viura, food-friendly (green olive tapenade, prosciutto, salami and prawns, among other things) and very good value. 12.6%. Empty bottle weight: 507g.

88

£8, Tesco


Señorio de Sarría Viñedo Cinco 2021, Navarra, Spain

Bright, lipstick pink Garnacha as ebullient in flavour as in colour – spicy strawberry, herb and sun-baked earth; full-bodied and smooth with a clean, fresh finish. Good with spicy and smoked sausages, chorizo and chick pea stews and spiced vegetables. 14%. Empty bottle weight: 394g.

87.5

Around £10, no UK retailers yet; 36€ for 6, Club Bornos


Coral de Peñascal Ethical Rosé 2021, Castilla y Leon, Spain

Very, very pale with delicate summer-pudding and peach flavours, soft texture and light citrus acidity from Tempranillo grapes. ’Coral’ and ’Ethical’ because 10% of profits are donated to the Coral Restoration Foundation, the wine is organic and produced in a carbon-neutral winery and the ultra-light bottle is made from recycled and recyclable materials. 12%.

87

£8.50 (introductory offer), Ocado; £10.50, Abel & Cole; £10.99, Adnams; £12 Bin Two Padstow


Cramele Recas Babele 2021, Romania

A salmon-pink blend of Merlot, Feteasca Neagra, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. Strawberry shortcake with a drizzle of peach juice and a sprinkle of orange zest. Easy and approachable. 12%.

87

£8.99, or £7.99 in an mix of 12, Laithwaites


Babylonstoren Mouvèdre Rosé 2022, South Africa

Pale powder-pink, crisp, dry, loosely Provençal in style and made from Mourvèdre, the grape variety that dominates Bandol rosé and gives a touch of spice to the sweet red-apple aromas and notes of redcurrant and pomegranate here. Just a touch abrupt and tart on the finish. 13%.

87

£16.50, Harris & Co; £16.99,Taurus Wines; £18.95, Vinotopia; £18.99, The Newt in Somerset


Folc Dry English Rosé 2021, England

Very pale, zingy, light-bodied Pinot Noir and Meunier-dominated blend of six varieties grown in Kent, East and West Sussex and Suffolk. Read more in my recent review of English wines (scroll to the tenth wine). 11%.

86.5

£16.99, Laithwaites, Drink Folc


Tormaresca Calafuria 2021, Salento, Italy

Dark salmon-pink, light-bodied, medium-dry southern Italian with a flavour of cherry bubblegum and a tiny hint of spritz. Made from Negroamaro grown on the two wine estates in Puglia owned by the Antinori family of Chianti fame. 12%.

86

£16.65, Vinvm; £19.99, Selfridges


Baron Amarillo Rioja Rosado 2021, Spain

Pale pink, bags of simple, perfumy fruit; medium body; off-dry. 13%.

86

£6.79, Aldi


Photographs by Joanna Simon


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