INSIDER'S PICK: 2016 DOMAINE DE FONTSAINTE 'GRIS DE GRIS' ROSE CORBIERES $17.99
While the last stragglers of the 2015 Rose season are still showing very nicely but slowly drifting away (what remains still receiving an extra 5% discount btw), it is time to start introducing the new crop of 2016s. With these new arrivals come our annual re-education of the drinking public of two common misconceptions on Rose wines; that they are 1) sweet, and 2) fragile delicate flowers that need to be consumed before the end of the summer. Dry Rose is a large part of the European drinking culture, providing lighter red wine flavors that can be consumed during the warmer months and still go with the seasonal cuisine. While they may not be designed to last for decades, the better versions that have good acidity and body can survive quite well for a few years before fading (which is what makes the deals on remaining 2015s such a steal). This version from acclaimed Corbieres producer Domaine de Fontsainte is particularly durable and substantial due to the unique grape used, called Grenache Gris. This mutation off of the well known Grenache variety evolved to have an extremely pale skin color even when fully ripe, which provides almost no coloring during the wine making process. The pale salmon color in this wine comes from the same soaking process that would have produced a deep red wine. Here it intensifies the flavor and provides much needed acidity and length on the palate.
Pale, Provencal-styled pink in the glass, delicate looking at first but surprisingly intense aromas of watermelon and pit fruits. As much as the impulse would be to drink this fresh out of the chiller, the aromas are much more striking a little closer to the 60 degree mark. The flavors don't suffer from less chill either, continuing the juicy watermelon character on the palate with a mouthfilling texture and a light touch of dusty tannins on the finish. If you prefer a crisper finish, the colder temperature will make the acidity show through a tad more. This is routinely one of the more popular Roses offered out of the acclaimed Kermit Lynch portfolio, so the national supply tends to go fairly quickly. Be sure to buy in April what you hope to be enjoying in June and July.
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We offering free tastings on these wines in the store every Thursday and Friday, and a 10% discount off the retail price through the duration of the day. Come on by and give them a try!