Archive for ‘Rose’

September 18, 2020

Culmina Saignée, 2019

Part of the summer whites package Culmina was passing off this year (to, no doubt, their very loyal fan base).  Hmmm.

OK, let’s start here: In over a decade of blogging about wine we have less than a dozen posts on rosé.  Why?  It’s an upsell wine.  It’s never as good as white (because when it’s chilled it loses flavour whereas, say, Champagne comes alive) and it’s never as good as red (because as it warms, and gains flavour, it’s both not as good as red and without the refreshing zest of white).  It’s a lose lose blend.  But you can’t stop seeing it on the shelves, shoved down our throats.

Well you know what?  If you must drink rosé, drink this.  It has enough heft to be interesting mixed with enough fruit, predominantly raspberry, to be heads and tails above a lot of other Okanagan offerings. I will say this: In summer, on the deck, it was very pleasant.

Still, mixed feelings. And when we moved on to red at dinner I was much more content.

Price: $24 direct from vineyard.

Market Liquidity: We give it our rosé seal of approval (which is of course not a real thing).

NB: Kudos to the photog who captured the underside of a table lamp.

January 18, 2018

Bernard-Massard Cuveé de l’Ecusson Pinot Noir (Rosé)

We took huge pleasure over the holidays with opening and sharing the base model sparkling from Luxembourg.  For a while, Everything Wine had the rosé as well, at about six dollars more.  It is juicy, it has the red currant and sweet plum sauce tangents of a decent Pinot Noir rosé, there is some decent minerality, the fizz is so-so, but despite the pluses we were non-plussed.  It simply didn’t have the fun and flair and conviviality of the base model.  It seemed more like a novelty wine then something either serious or cheerful.


Price: Around $25 before taxes.  You can find it at the Liquor Barn locations if you must.


Market Liquidity: Like MC Hammer pants, a curiosity not in our rotation.

September 19, 2017

Ch. Peyguerol Costieres de Nimes Rosé & Haywire Secrest Mountain Gamay Noir Rosé, 2016

We finished off the summer on the most spectacular of Labour Day weekends with some half decent plonk, although neither of these rosés left a huge impression.

The C d Nimes was my preference of the two, even when it veered to being peachy to the point of punchy.  Aromatic and fruity but not cloying.  The Haywire is more of a lab experiment gone awry: it’s sharp, it’s tart, it’s like a pop rock without the pop.  The concrete vats and native yeast have left it sere and flat and confrontational, like running into a thug in a dark alley by accident.  I think it will please the wine aficionados in its uniqueness (in terms of the BC rosé production) while deeply offending the average joe looking for a decent rosé.  The OK Crush Pad description (which was part of the rationale for the purchase) reads:

A delicate salmon hue, lifted berry fruit, with a hint of thyme and spice. Delicate floral and citrus notes dance on the palate. Texturally lush and glossy, with a fresh and lively finish.

Wow.  That’s some bone of contention there.  Where’s the ad standards council when you need it?


Price: $25 each give or take.


Market Liquidity: Neither was pricey, neither was impressive.


July 12, 2017

Pure Mirabeau en Provence Rosé, 2015

Boring and banal.  But Anthony Gismondi gave it 90 points so, yes, I sourced it (at $30 before taxes!) and gave it a go.  And I guess Gismondi was obligated because Robert Parker also found it “excessively” drinkable.  I feel like Charlie Brown when Lucy sets up the football: Each summer Gismondi gives a rosé a high point score and each summer I source it and each summer I’m suckered.  Look at the pic: I bought not one but two!  Who knows how rich I might be if I’d invested in lottery tickets instead?  At least there is the “hope” that comes with a lottery ticket.


This wine, in our opinion, is a veritable disaster.  Any thinner and it would be admitted to a medical clinic  for anorexia.  It’s pale to look at, plain on the palate, innocuous on the finish.  And here’s the extra special rub: BC has some of the finest pinot gris (or pinot grigio, our vintners can’t make up their minds) on the planet.  From A to Z.  We’ve reviewed a bunch.  The Sea Star is sensationally interesting, layers of depth.  The La Stella is a crowd favorite, what a mouthful of delight.  The Blue Mountain is ridiculously inexpensive and of especial value.  The Nichol we blow hot and cold on, but this year we really took to it, and even when we don’t it towers over the Mirabeau.  Even the Tinhorn Creek has won us over.  Why with this abundance of patio friendly, light and lovely and diverse PGs should we even bother with rosé?  Beats me.




Price: $29.99 before tax at BC Liquor (and hard to source at that).


Market Liquidity: This is to a decent bottle of wine what a Christmas panto is to Shakespeare.

April 22, 2016

Le Vieux Pin Vaïla Rosé, 2015

Le Vieux Pin Vaila 2015

In a culture seemingly obsessed with serving rosé, I can’t seem to glom on or endorse the fad.  I try though.  Isn’t it really just an excuse to serve young wine and fill up the vineyard’s coffers?  I’m old enough to remember White Zinfandel as, wait for it, a house wine.  In fact, I’m old enough to remember brunch at the old O’Doul’s on Robson St. with palm fronds drooping over your table’s butter dish and ladies in pant suits sipping wine spritzers mid-morning.  But as these things go, you could do much worse (pay more and enjoy less) than this wonderful refreshing not-overly-alcoholic-but-too-much-alcohol-for-lunch Pinot Noir sipper.


It has a delirious refreshing quality but never accomplished much (on the nose or the palate).  The price, in the mid-20s, sits very well for a light summer aperitif.  In short, mixed feelings.  Buy one for the table and stick with Blue Mountain in the fridge.  (The reserve Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay came out this week at BM.  Better buys all round in my books.)


Price: Just under thirty with taxes at Swirl Yaletown (not available, as of this review, at the vineyard, funnily enough).


Market Liquidity: If rosé is your wont, you won’t be disappointed.

Robson St in the late 1970s, at the end of its heyday, when you could still get groceries, a magazine and even drop your shoes off at a cobbler.

Robson St in the late 1970s, at the end of its heyday, when you could still get groceries, a magazine and even drop your shoes off at a cobbler.


August 19, 2015

Baillie-Grohman Blanc de Noir Rosé & Belle Glos Oeil de Perdrix Pinot Noir Blanc 2014

Rosé is a ruse. You pay the same dollars as for a fine red (or white), and you get something in between, not as good as either. But for whatever reason rosé is also in vogue. Reviewers go head over heel. God knows why. The average Josephine, she tends to like the colour. I write that seriously. Labels, bottle shape and colour seem to matter more at a party nowadays than what you drink.


We almost always find the quality and price point of a decent Pinot Gris trumps local rosé but there are one or two exceptions. Here it is mid-August, stinking hot, the summer that started in May and is predicted to continue to October, so if you’re going to stay with the patio theme, try either or both.

Belle Glos Oeil de Perdrix Pinot noir Blanc 2014


The Baillie-Grohman we inhaled. It was light, ethereal, floral, and a stunning complement to a pesto pasta salad. The Belle Glos, on the other hand, we sipped over an evening.  It is a hot commodity in BC this summer; it came in one fell swoop to the Lower Mainland then sold out almost instantly. Last time I checked there were only a handful of bottles left in the province. It obviously has many admirers, to say nothing of the long and pretentious label, from California (not France). Comparatively, it’s heavier, and more classically Pinot-ish, while it came on the palate inoffensive like a dime store rosé, it had a deep finish that resonates with the archetypal candy apple of its ilk; piquant, appealing, sharply acidic. And, yes, hard to resist. But ten dollars more than the wholly lovable Grohman. You know where I’m going…


Gone too soon!

Gone too soon!

Price: The Baillie-Grohman sells at the VQA retailers for a stunning value, a mere $19 including tax. Wow. The hard to find much sought after CA with the French label goes, with tax, for $28 at BC Liquor.


Market Liquidity: To quote Chris Rock, a man is only as faithful as his options. We take the savings.

August 1, 2013

M Chapoutier “Beaurevoir” Tavel Rosé, 2012

photo 1Summer.  Fresh fruit, new vegetables, BBQ.  Flowers in bloom.  It feels so good and you’re in such a good mood that every year (every year) when the sales clerk sells you on a sensational bottle of rosé you take the bait.  And every year it’s the same old same old; whites and reds are better.  I’ve had rosé on five continents and all I can say is, “Myeh…”

This wine does not reserve a review but, in all fairness, $30 is a princely sum for mediocrity.

photo 5 photo 2a

photo 2

Price: $29.99 at Everything Wine and, actually, more expensive at other private stores.

Market Liquidity: Like a zillion summer movies; here one week, gone the next.

photo 4

photo 3

photo 3a

Luscious summer pudding: Raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, compressed 48 hours in angel food cake.