Gunning for Rosés

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The rosé phenomenon is an unstoppable train. If you haven’t gotten aboard yet, this is the season. Pink wine may now be a yearlong party, but spring is when it really gets rolling. There’s something about the freshness, the garden aromas and the sunny charm that is totally in sync with the season. Remember: Rosé is a red wine that’s got only half of its color, flavor and—most importantly—tannin, so you can chill the hell out of it on a hot day and it still tastes good. The following are current favorites.

 

Spy Valley Pinot Noir Rosé, Marlborough New Zealand, 2015 

A rosé made from pinot noir? What will they think of next? (Note: See Sancerre rosé.) This has the added advantage of being from New Zealand, which means long hours of sunshine to ripen the grapes and cold weather to keep them zesty and tart. This wine has a little anise-like spice, a lot of strawberry and tangerine and a crisp long finish. Try it with raw shellfish.

$16, Boston Wine Exchange

 

Txomin Etxaniz Rosé, Getariako Txakolina, 2015 

Made with a 50/50 mix of the white hondarribi zuri and the red hondarribi beltza, grown on rocky soils overlooking the Bay of Biscay, this Basque rosé is an ultra-minerally, bone-dry, sour cherry-like wine with biting acids. Clean and electrifying on the palate, it calls attention to itself in every respect: the unpronounceable name, the distinctive bottle, the lively saline finish. Enjoy it with a goat cheese salad.

$24, Winestone, Chestnut Hill

 

Caves d’Esclans Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé, 2015

This wine has made a splash since its introduction a few years ago; it’s good to see that success hasn’t gone to its head. A pale salmon color, it has a floral, delicate berry aroma, light yeastiness and a clean, mineral, vegetal quality on the palate. Dry, with some cherry, herb and stony notes, it has a bit more body than the other selections and is a touch spicier and rounder in texture. Thanks to the richer texture, it will complement fuller fish dishes.

$22, Bauer Wine & Spirits, Boston

 

Sandy Block is a master of wine and the vice president of beverage operations for Legal Sea Foods.

 


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