2011 Domaine Collotte Marsannay Rosé
Retail price: approximately $20
Available at Suburban Wines and Spirits
French Wines: La Plus Belle, Jeune et Chic
The French wine cognoscenti have long been searching out and enjoying the pleasures of lively and refreshing rosés. For those of you who want to remain loyal to the pink persuasion but are ready for something a bit more unique, you’ll need to think outside the pink box, which for French rosés means somewhere other than the vineyards of Tavel or Provence. Where exactly? Marsannay, bien sûr!
The 2011 Domaine Collotte Marsannay rosé from the Côte de Nuits, in northern Bourgogne, is an absolute standout. Made from 100 percent pinot noir, Domaine Collotte captures many of the most desirable rosé characteristics: the frisky freshness of youth and the bone-dry finish that make you want to drink the wine for lunch and dinner on even the warmest of summer days.
As soon as the grapes at Domaine Collotte are harvested, they are pressed, fermented and racked into stainless-steel tanks to preserve every drop of freshness. The results are impressive: an elegant coppery pink color with a cherry, peach and violet nose to complement a firm structure and dry mineral finish. The color of rosé is determined by both the grape variety as well as the amount of time the freshly pressed juice spends in gentle contact with the skins of the red grapes. In addition to imparting the rosé’s color, the contact with the skins also instills a small amount of tannic structure. So in the world of dry rosés, one might say the darker the rosé, the more body or tannic structure. Of course, a rosé will never have the tannins of full-bodied red wines, and therefore ought to be not aged but rather appreciated in its youthful prime.
In order to remain slightly ahead of the pack who adore fashionable rosés, I’d recommend the Domaine Collotte rosé. It makes a wonderful gift for a summertime dinner party or is an easy crowd-pleaser as your own house wine for the summer. It’s best in spring and summer, but it is so food friendly that you can offer it year-round to your friends who fancy their wines belle, jeune et chic.
Serve with petits farcis, salmon, salade d’épinards, grilled vegetables, bouillabaisse and barbecued chicken.
Editor’s note: Food and wine lovers heading to Paris might want to try one of the Girls’ Guide’s favorite cooking classes in Paris.