The Drinks Business has reported that a blind tasting of Rosé wines in London this month confirmed the superiority of Provence, but also highlighted the quality of Bordeaux Rosé. The tasting was organised by Richard Bampfield MW and covered 20 Rosés from the 2012 vintage and locations as diverse as Corsica,
Istria and Bolgheri, as well as more traditional Rosé-producing regions such as Provence, Bandol and the Rhône and Sancerre, not forgetting New World areas Marlborough and the Barossa. The wines were tasted by a range of press and merchants, as well as The Drinks Business:
“In short, it was Provence, Bordeaux and Sancerre which were the most highly-rated rosé wine producing regions.”
The highest scores were awarded to two Provencal Rosés – Chateau Leoube’s Secret de Léoube and Domaine Ott’s Clos Mireille – and one Bordeaux Rosé from Château Brown.
Chateau Brown’s lies in Pessac Leognan and the 2012 is their first ever Rosé. The chateau takes its name from the Scottish trader John Lewis Brown who purchased the estate in 1795 (he also acquired Chateau Cantenac Brown and Chateau Boyd Cantenac in 1806 when he married into the Boyd family).
Today it is owned by Jean-Christophe Mau whose family were long established Bordelaise negotiants.
The Drinks Business’s top 10 Rosés from the event also included Chateau de Sours’ La Source. Chateau de Sours dates back to the 14th century when it served as an inn on the St Jacques de Compostelle pilgrimage route. The chateau was built in 1792 and stands on a limestone plateau south west of Libourne and Pomerol, facing Saint Emilion.
It is owned by Martin and Nicolette Krajewski who produce a range of wines (Red, White and Rosé) and an unusual Sparkling Rosé using the Champenoise secondary fermentation in bottle.
Rosé wines are very popular in France (domestic sales have more than doubled in the past 20 years – 1 in 4 bottles bought there is a Rosé). Many of France’s top gourmet restaurants have Rosé on their wine lists and quite a few of Bordeaux’s Grand Cru Classé produce a Rosé of their own.
Here in the UK Rosé accounts for 1 in 8 bottles of wine bought in supermarkets and off licences (up from 1 in 40 in the year 2000). Sales of rose wine in shops are currently worth £646 million in Britain, nearly £1.8 million a day, according to figures from market analysts Nielsen. According to the Telegraph experts believe it is becoming a drink that is enjoyed all year round.
Good Bordeaux Rosé doesn’t have to burn a hole in your pocket and if you are keen to try some for yourself check out Rosé Wine at Bordeaux-Undiscovered.