Live life in the pink with our 'dealer's choice' of rosé wines. It might be deep winter but we're sure there's an Yves Klein blue sky in your imagination which can be re-activated.
If you seek life beyond Whispering Angel - sold, incidentally, in more than 100 countries with over 4 million bottles produced - there's a world of boutique and carefully grown and made rosé to choose from.
One thing we'd love to lay to rest is the myth that palest pink = best quality. The colour comes from the grape skins and depends upon how long they were macerated for, not from sugar! So there's a couple of 'very light reds' here which will completely amaze you. Here's the rundown:
2018 VAGABOND WINERY English Rosé
Hailed by Master of Wine Richard Hemming as 'England's best rosé we are inordinately proud of our little pinkie. A lively strawberries and cream scent with a gentle texture that is more mouth-filling and substantial than you may expect.
2019 CHATEAU GRAND BOISE 'Jadis' Cotes de Provence-St Victoire
The prestige label of Chateau Grand Boise is a beautifully elegant wine that conveys the delicate scent of grapefruit, watermelon and subtle thyme and fennel notes. It's a true taste of the land and is farmed from the best plots of this organic certified estate. Exclusive to Vagabond in the UK.
2019 DOMAINE DE FONDRECHE Ventoux Rose
We're huge fans of this biodynamic estate located on the slopes of 'the Giant of Provence' - Mount Ventoux. A classic grape blend utilising 50% Cinsault, 30% Syrah, 20% Grenache. Gorgeous potash pink colour. Distinguished and properly dry and mineral in style with brightly defined grapefruit, tangerine, cape gooseberry and white pepper scents. A delight.
2019 CHATEAU DE ROQUEFORT 'Corail' Cotes de Provence
Usually all sold out to bars and restaurants by mid-summer but this year the lockdowns have enabled us to eek out the stock a while longer. A deeper hue than many Cotes de Provence rosés, but don't let that scare you away! The grape blend is Grenache, Syrah, Cinsault, Carignan and Vermentino. A wine designed for the table to cope with all kinds of punchy flavours. If you like Pacific rim fusion cuisine then here's the ideal foil.
2019 DOMAINES OTT Chateau Romassan Bandol
Bandol is the crown jewel of Provence pinks in our opinion. You pay for it but, my word, isn't the wine worth it? A stellar, world-class bottle of wine with intense, beguiling character. You'll be listing off all the red berries, citrus fruits, flowers and herbs you can think of as you drink it. For the points chasers this got a tub-thumping 94 point review from vinous.com.
2018 ROCCA DI MONTEGROSSI Toscana Rosato
Finally, away from Provence to the hills of Chiantishire. Montegrossi's red wines are robust and soulful renderings of the local Sangiovese grape and, while you wait for those to age into elegance, you can get stuck in to the 'light red' here. All salty, chalky freshness upfront with a tangy, lightly spicy flavour of red cherry and raspberry. A silky, calming style ready to convert the darker hue rosé sceptics.