Roses for Valentine’s Day

Food & Drink

OK, so we’re not the first to think of roses for Valentine’s Day. But maybe we’re among the few out there thinking about rosé wines for this Hallmark holiday. Because, yes, we are still drinking pink in February and you should, too. Here are a dozen that make for good drinking, clinking and whatever else you want to do with your Valentine (wink, wink).

Ab Astris “Aurora” Texas High Plains Rosé 2022, Texas. A Mourvèdre-driven blend that also includes, Grenache and Carignan, this is an off-dry, red-fruit-inflected bottling that manages to be both juicy and crisp. Berries and summer fruit belie the darker cranberry-hue of this wine, with its dreamy label inspired by the dawn.

Chateau D’Esclans 2021, Côtes de Provence. From the house of Sacha Lachine, this fancy bottle will make a pretty impression on your valentine. Delicate, crisp baby red fruits. If you can’t take a romantic holiday to the south of France, this elegant bottle is the next best thing with its ability to transport you to sunnier climes. The sister “Les Clans” delivers aromas of ripe red berries and some light toasty notes. The palate is on the spicy side with some tropical fruit notes, suggesting this might be a good match with curries or other Indian dishes. The very floral and blossomy Garrus leans right into citrus, stone and tropical fruits such as pineapple and passion fruit with lots of mouth texture from both a creaminess and a spicy undertone.

Farmhouse Vineyards “Prohibition Rose” 2021, Texas High Plains. An almost cranberry-colored pour paying homage to girls who just want to have fun (hey, this is for y’all celebrating Galentine’s Day”). A blend of 45% Mourvèdre, 30% Cinsault, 25% Sangiovese, this is a fresh summer-fruit sip that belies the darker hue. The back label has a music scan, a ballad especially paired with the wine.

Gary Farrell “Selection” Rosé of Pinot Noir 2022, Russian River Valley. This offering from a reliable producer in a prestige AVA has crunchy red currant and cranberry as the entry points, which then give over to tropical notes of blood orange and pink grapefruit. A bit of saline tinge adds a zesty note. A nice structured wine for cold nights. (Not that you’ll be having one of those on Valentine’s Day.)

Invention Vineyards “IV” Mourvèdre Rosé 2022, Texas. All the red-berry fruits are playing here—plus some cherry and an herbal component and some spice, too. Deeply hued, well structured, leaning a little toward the strawberry preserves spectrum, including that stemmy note. A food wine for sure.

Peyrassol “Le Clos” 2022, Côtes de Provence. Delicate fresh fruit with tropical tones or peach, pineapple and a little pink grapefruit tang. Tart, fresh and with enough structure to accompany some cold-weather fare. The Chateau bottling delivers white flowers, white orchard fruit and citrus notes on the nose and showy tart red fruit on the palate, all wrapped in a pleasantly soft and creamy envelope. “Les Commandeurs” is a pretty pearl pink reminiscent of the color of the underside of a conch shell. Here, the orchard turns to fresh peaches, accompanied by a fresh berry basket as you’d find in the market. Accompanied by with a saline tinge. Typical blend of regional grapes, slightly led by Cinsault. All three were made from certified organic grapes at an art-filled destination estate.

Stinson Vineyards Rosé of Tannat 2022, Virginia. Only 400 cases were made of this copper-penny pink wine that shows red currant and baby-strawberry preserves notes. Tannat is known for its structure, and this one—also a little creamy and a viscous—is a good pairing for colder-weather drinking and heartier fare.

Wedding Oak “Sweetheart Rosé” 2021, Texas. Dark copper-penny pink, this is an off-cry strawberry-inflected wine with some sweet/tart red fruit on it. Medium bodied and a little glycerol on the palate, this is a little more structured to go with food, but uncomplicated enough for a simple quaff.

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