What to drink this week
More serious rosé
In a recent column, I expressed a certain nostalgia for the days when rosé didn’t have to be ultra-pale and über-sophisticated, in the Saint-tropez mode, and when pink wines could get away with a certain depth of colour or even character. At a recent tasting, I found my wishes being granted by the winebuying equivalent of the Tooth Fairy, the thoughtful and accomplished Katherine Dart MW of Berry Bros & Rudd.
Pink wines with colour and character do still exist, Harry Eyres assures us
Why you should be drinking them
You might think serious rosé is a contradiction in terms, but such thinking would be historically shallow. Not long ago, during a cellar tour at Guigal in the Rhône, Philippe Guigal remarked to me that, as recently as the 1980s, Guigal’s Tavel rosé was as dark as a pale Pinot Noir red and was sold at four years of age.
What to drink
Katherine’s offerings didn’t include a Tavel, but the Berry Bros & Rudd Provence Rosé by Château la Mascaronne (below, £12.95; www.bbr. com) is a slightly fleshier pink than many of the more etiolated Côte d’azur versions, with enticing strawberry fruit and a touch of cinnamon. I was even more excited by the 2016 Langhe Rosato Trediberri (£10.95; www.bbr. com), made from 80% Nebbiolo (the grape of Barolo and Barbaresco) and 20% Barbera. Quite a deep pink in colour, this rosé is a proper wine, bristling with bright fruit and energy. Finally, from quite an unexpected source, there’s the 2016 Birichino Vin Gris Rosé (£18.00; www.bbr. com) from California; the colour is pale, but there’s a fascinating gameyness (from old vine Mourvèdre) and lovely, fresh acidity.