Happy Valentine’s Day February 14, 2017!
Rose Petal Stiletto on our table at the Taubman Museum of Art 2016 Women’s Luncheon
So many bubbly rosé choices to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your love…here’s a sampling…expensive to affordable…
(Champagne prices listed in this blog may vary from the readers local stores and on-line sources.)
Rosé Champagne—A pink version of champagne, most often made by the blending of a little red wine with normally vinified white wine. Champagne is the only appellation in France that is allowed to blend red and white wine together. Rosé champagne can also be made with the saignée method, which involves macerating the juice on the grape skins in order to impart color.
If money is no object ~ $200 +
Krug Rosé Champagne NV
The Champagne Guide 2014-2015 rates Krug Rosé Champagne 98 points with these notes:
Pinot Noirs from the best vines in Ay are treated to a short fermentation on skins and then blended with pinot noir, pinot meunier and chardonnay fermented in small oak casks as white wine, before aging for a minimum of five years in bottle.
Its ethereal restraint and delicate air seems a paradox in the grand decadence of Krug, but such is the detailed intricacy of this medium salmon-tinted cuvée that it dances with light-footed grace on a stage of epic complexity. Absolute restraint and taut freshness of strawberry hull, white cherry, red apple and lemon zest slowly unravel to nuances of anise and mixed spice. An impeccable acid profile and pinpont bead define a remarkable finish of mind-blowing seamlessness, impeccable line and unrelenting persistence. Most thrilling of all, its minerality is all encompassing, mouth-embracing and emphatically chalk-infused.
My notes on this beautiful champagne which we enjoyed on our anniversary were, well, to be honest, I was so blown away by actually tasting such a fine champagne that I did not take extensive notes. My husband clearly remembers that I remarked repeatedly “I love this bubbly”!
That magical evening I served one of my favorite Ina Garten appetizers ~ Lobster Salad on Belgium Endive: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/lobster-salad-in-endive-recipe.html
$80 – $90 range:
Billecart-Salmon Brut Rosé NV
Billecart-Salmon Brut Rosé NV ~ Wine Spectator rated this rosé champagne “92” with these notes:“Finely meshed and elegant, with mouth-watering acidity and a satiny texture carrying the delicate flavors of ripe raspberry, lemon shortbread, chalk and fresh ginger. Offers a clean, minerally finish. Drink now through 2020.”
$70 – $80 range:
Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rosé Brut NV
Notes from The Champagne Guide 2014-2015:
Laurent-Perrier macarates its rosé for 12-72 hours, depending on fruit ripeness, until the color is fixed and the aroma resembles freshly picked raspberries. So crucial is timing, legend has it that the first Chef de Cave, Edouard Leclerc, slept by the tank to stop it just in time! This wine has achieved that elusive ideal of volume and finesse, the world’s best-selling rosé champagne epitomizes the ultra-restraint of rosé’s finest expressions. All the more remarkable for the challenging saignée method.
One of the first times that we served this delightful rosé, one of our guests exclaimed “Oh! Easter Wine!” She explained that her mother always liked to serve wine that matched her pink dining room drapes on Easter Sunday (White Zinfandel Wine). We all got quite a giggle over that story and we continue to call this Rosé Brut “Easter Wine” to this day.
I paired this lovely champagne with slices of cucumber lightly spread with mascarpone cheese (cream cheese may be substituted) topped with smoked salmon and a dusting of fresh dill with a sprinkle of Old Bay Seasoning.
$60 – $70 Range (price based on non-vintage)
Veuve Clicquot Rosé NV
50 to 55% Pinot Noir, 15 to 20% Pinot Meunier, and 28 to 33% Chardonnay. My notes: silky on the tongue, beautiful fine bubbles, lively black cherry and raspberry fruit and rich brioche.
Wine Spectator rates this rosé “91” with these notes: “Bright and expressive, with mouth-watering acidity and refined texture, layered with black cherry, spiced plum, almond skin, honey and candied ginger notes. Shows lovely balance, offering a lasting finish of smoky mineral. Drink now through 2020.”
$45 – $50 range
Argyle Brut Rosé Willamette Valley 2011
Wine Spectator tasting notes: Argyle Brut Rosé Willamette Valley 2011. Light and refreshing, a refined style, with finesse to the balance of fruit and savory notes as the finish dances. Rated 91.
My tasting notes:
A lovely sparkling offering from Oregon. Tiny bubbles dance around the glass. Pretty pale pink salmon color. The first sip explodes with fresh ripe cherry flavors. A blend of 70% pinot noir and 25% pinot meunier with a splash of chardonnay. The finish is creamy but with a little tingle on the tongue. This sparkly is well deserving of its 91 points. Cheers!
$25 – $30 range
Charles Duret Cremant De Bourgogne Rosé
This French sparkling wine is made using the traditional method or Méthode Traditionnelle used in Champagne. Lovely small consistent bubbles. A touch of brioche in the wine’s bouquet, followed by aromas of blackcurrants and redcurrants.
$18 – $20 range:
Cleto Chiarli Brut de Noir Rosé
Rosé Vino Spumante Brut
I readily admit I am a sucker for a pretty wine label. The Cleto Chiarli with its fancy label and frilly script pulled me right in. Pretty pink in the glass. This sparkling is a wonderful value and a very enjoyable rosé for relaxing sippin’.
Blend of Grasparossa and Pinot Nero grapes. Raspberry and Strawberry notes are no surprise in this wine. The real surprise is the smooth finish…no acidic bite or tannins at the end of the sip…just a touch of refreshing lingering lemon at the very end.
After I purchased this bottle, chilled it and was sipping on it, I opened the Sunday, June 18, 2016 issue of the Wall Street Journal (thank you to my bubbly friend who always saves WSJ wine articles for me!) and found the article 20 Splendid Summer Wines – All Under $20. The very wine I was sipping was recommended in this article: The Emilia-Romagna region of Italy is as famous for Lambrusco as it is for cheese, though its Parmigiano-Reggiano may get more respect – or at least recognition – and that’s a shame. A dry, frothy red like this is compulsively drinkable and great with food. Serve well-chilled.
$15 – $18 range:
Graham Beck Brut Rosé Sparkling Wine
Wine Spectator notes: “Soft and friendly, with good cherry and watermelon notes and an easygoing finish. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.” A blend of 59%, Pinot Noir and 41% Chardonnay.
My notes: Sparkling wine from South Africa. Inexpensive but drinkable. Nice, consistent tiny bubbles in the glass. Later in the year this will be a fun “porch sittin’ sparkly” (Southern for “sitting on the porch drinking sparkling wine in the sunshine”!)
Aimery Crémant Brut
‘Crémant’ sparkling wines are made using the same method as Champagne and with strict regulations around ageing. Ribbons of bubbles and sparkling notes of berries just like your favorite champagne, without breaking the bank. Delicate, fresh with a long, mouth-filling finish. The color of this sparkling blushes just slightly and tiny bubbles consistently rise to the top of glass.
Royal Provence Rivarose Brut Rosé
One of my favorites in this price range. The lacy label is so pretty! Produced in the southern Rhône Valley, fresh with notes of raspberry made from Syrah and Grenache grapes.
Here’s an article from LA Weekly with fun Pink Sparkling Wine suggestions for Valentine’s Day:
Please visit my Facebook page: Bubblybee