May’s warm weather and fresh seasonal culinary options bring to mind the Mediterranean and the fine rosés of Southern France, which is the original home of rosé. Some of the world’s finest examples hail from such regions as Provence, Languedoc, Tavel and the Côtes du Rhône. Fresh, fruity, pink and dry, rosé is stylistically similar to white wines in its crisp acidity and citrus flavors and resembles red wines in its red fruit notes, spice profile (albeit mild) and fuller-bodied nature.
The red grapes Grenache, Syrah, Cinsault and Mourvèdre are often used to make rosé, which is produced by briefly exposing juice to skins after crushing to impart some color and flavor and then, typically, fermenting in stainless steel tanks.
Domaine de la Solitude 2011
Côtes du Rhône, France
Resplendent tangerine citrus notes and a striking pomegranate hue set the stage for a crisp, refreshing, fuller-bodied mouth feel with a trace of black pepper on the finish. Pair with duck confit hash, eggplant caponata with goat cheese, and maple-glazed pork shoulder with eggs and grits.
$14.99; DeVine Wines & Spirits, 2961 Dougherty Ferry Road, Suite 107, Kirkwood, 636.825.9647
Chateau Revelette 2010
Elegant yet flirty strawberry notes are flecked with ginger spice and give way to a raspberry-dominant, juicy, slightly creamy mouth feel. Pair with roasted shellfish with saffron mayonnaise; lamb bulgogi with Asian pear dipping sauce; and shaved, flash-fried Brussels sprouts with Pecorino.
$15.99; Ladue Market, 9155 Clayton Road, Ladue, 314.993.0184
A St. Louis-based wine and food enthusiast, Jennifer Johnson is a sommelier, wine educator, journalist, and hospitality and marketing consultant who loves to celebrate life, family, food and wine.