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Rosé nestled in a bed of green grass in the sun. . . it’s what I am dreaming of these days. I’m also dreaming of boat days, long weekends, sandy feet and salty hair, and garden fresh tomatoes and sunsets that stretch on and on.

As I look out the window, I see my slumped over seedlings and gray skies and wonder will we ever see the sun again? The struggle is real.

But we still have rosé, and that’s just a bit of sunshine in a bottle, a trip to France with the pop of a cork, a brief holiday from all of the worries of the everyday.

 domaine de la bastide cotes du rhone

This 2014 Domaine de la Bastide Côtes du Rhône Rosé was a last minute addition to our wine fridge last weekend, and it’s definitely a wine I would seek out again. Much like how I feel about this spring, I didn’t love this wine at first.

We opened it, and on initial inspection thought it had a vinegar-y nose. Once swirled around in the glass, however, that changed, and it was a delightful, dry wine with those chalky mineral notes I love from a rosé. It had some pretty floral notes as well, maybe rose petal, along with bright strawberry, and a nice crisp finish. Not too acidic, and with no overwhelming flavors, this wine is easy like a summer day and perfect for just that.

The price was definitely right. At $13 a bottle, this wine is great for Saturday afternoons on the patio or at the park or at the beach. . . you get my drift.


Desperately Craving Summer

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Tags: rhone, Rosé season, rose wine, wine, wine lover, wine of the week, Wine Wednesday

We finally left the house this Saturday for a reason other to go to work. This winter has definitely put a wrench in many social plans, so it was a refreshing, wonderful change to get out for errands, a tasting at Night Shift Brewing, and dinner at the gorgeous home of my favorite wine PR maven and her family, including the cutest baby boy ever.

We tend to stock up on our favorite wines and bring wine along whenever we visit friends, and this time, without even knowing what was for dinner, the wine we brought turned out to be a perfect pairing.

porchetta and Mourvedre

I can honestly say that the Two Shepherds 2012 Mourvèdre we brought is one of the best wines I have tasted all year, and it was amazing with the porchetta with homemade sausage that we feasted on. The wine was a beautiful light, raspberry/violet color, and it reminded me of a Pinot Noir, making it excellent for the pork. The nose was simply gorgeous, again, raspberry and cranberry, aromas that had me going back to the glass again and again to breathe it in. The wine’s slight peppery notes brought out the fennel in the sausage in the loveliest way. This wine is so elegant and refined but juicy and bright at the same time. I am seriously in love with it. Two Shepherds wines are not available in many stores yet, but you can buy the wine online here. The winemaker also happens to be one of the nicest people I know and has kindly introduced us to so much of his Sonoma County, wineries and restaurants we might not have found ourselves. I believe tasting is by appointment only at this point, but well worth it if you can make it happen.

Our hosts are cooking through the Jerusalem cookbook, and I wish I had taken more photos of dinner. They made the Butternut Squash and Tahini Spread with homemade bread. . . to die for. While there I thumbed through the Jerusalem vegetable cookbook as well, and I decided I definitely need to have it. I have been craving creative veggie dishes, and it is just perfect. I can bet that most of them will go well with this Mourvèdre.

Have you discovered any delicious food and wine pairings lately?

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Tags: mourvedre, rhone, Two Shepherds wine, wine, wine and food pairing, wine of the week, wine tasting, Wine Wednesday

Another weekend is almost upon us, and many of us will be taking advantage of long, sunshine-filled days with friends and family, beach time, barbecues, and other relaxing summer fun. It’s still summer, after all!

I have some perfect wines to go with your summery fun. The below samples showed up in my office one Monday morning not too long ago. A Monday with a wine mail call is not too bad at all!

Rhône rosés

The following wines were kindly sent to me:

  • M.Chapoutier Côtes du Rhône Belleruche Rosé 2013
  • Domaine Le Murmurium Côtes du Ventoux Rosé 2013
  • Saveur du Temps Costières de Nîmes Rosé 2013
  • Lavau Côtes du Rhône Rosé 2013

All of these are Rhône rosés, known for being more structured and fuller bodied than others, and for their ability to pair with food. As I mentioned above, they also pair really well with sun.

We sampled these wines on the boat and in our back yard, and we truly loved them all.

imageMy favorites, however, were the Saveur du Temps Costières de Nîmes Rosé  and the Lavau.

The Saveur du Temps, a Grenache/Syrah blend  was fun and fruity, shared with friends in the sun while enjoying bits of cheese, meat, veggies, and other snacks. It’s one of those wines you could drink with anyone; it’s fruity enough for those who prefer something sweeter, but it’s still nice and dry.

The Lavau, a blend of Cinsault and Grenache,  has a beautiful rich color and medium body, with dark cherry and ripe strawberry notes, fruits that really show themselves in the wine. But there’s also that dry, mineral characteristic that wines from this region also express. I can tell you it’s just really yummy.

Most importantly, the Lavau is a reminder that there are Rosé wines that are made for year-round enjoyment, with heavier foods like spiced grilled steak, which is what we paired this with. Because these wines have more structure and complexity than your regular beach day Rosé, you could easily be sipping them while wrapped up in your favorite sweater in front of a fire pit outdoors. The thought sounds kind of delightful, doesn’t it?


All of these wines were provided as samples. All opinions are my own.

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Tags: Labor Day weekend, rhone, Rhône rosés, Rhône Valley Wines, rose, summer, Summer wine, wine, wine tasting

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