May 11, 2009

To the Barricades, Mes Amis!

The French are revolting!

In Provence, at least, a revolution is afoot. The winemakers there are protesting a recent decision by the EU that would allow for the manufacture of rosé by blending red wine into white. This instead of the traditional approach of leaving pressed juice on the skins just long enough to stain them gris.

This is a prime example of the kind of thing that would totally piss me off if I cared about this kind of thing.

Because I don't think the issue is merely semantic. I think the Provencal have a point. I think rosé should mean something (so then perhaps it is merely semantic?). Rosé should mean you've allowed for a brief interval of staining maceration. It should mean you're old-school. It should not mean you've poured a little red wine into a lot of white wine to make it pink. If the point is merely pinkness then let's use drops of Red Dye #2, put an animal on the label and call it day.

But at the Lab were are not calling it a day. We are saying no to blended pinkness.

As a show of solidarity, we're drinking a true rosé, Robert Sinskey's Vin Gris of Pinot Noir, 2008.

(ed note: if you've noticed the last few posts all share a theme of "elaborately justifying what we're drinking at the Lab," well, then, you are paying close attention. Nice work by you.)

The nose on the Sinskey rosé is almost startling. It's fresh and bright, and smells exactly like ripe strawberries at first, then turns more vinous with time in the air. In the mouth, the wine almost floats. This is what liquid rose petals from some exotic bloom might taste like, mixed with Bing cherry essence and hints of pomelo acid. And it's all held aloft by a poignant minerality that lingers achingly on the finish. But the best part of all is the color. It's an elegant, almost coppery, hue of salmon pink. This is stunning wine.

It might be worth fighting for.


Brooklynguy said...

My favorite American rose without any question. Always excellent - complex and interesting wine, and also refreshing and great with food. Sort of a shame that the price has now climbed to over $35 here in NYC, as it begins to intrude on Bandol rose territory.

keep it up with the elaborate justifications. me like.


Laboratory Chief said...

I knew I liked you.

But $35!? Kylog Yikes indeed!

I'm pretty sure I paid $19.99 at K&L Wines in Hollywood. However, that freight may also explain why there is no more in stock there.

Corkdork said...

Elaborate justifications are fine in my book -- it beats "hey, I was in my local Enomatic bar after a movie, and decided to taste some whites."

Oh, wait. I've used that excuse.

Laboratory Chief said...

Any justification that uses the word "enomatic" qualifies as elaborate.

Nice work.

Anonymous said...

As we like to say in England, France is a beautiful country with wonderful architecture, amazing food, great wine and fantastic art, it's just too bad it is full of the French...

I can't believe the French would allow Rose to be redefined as a blend of red and white wines, sacreligious !

I just had a fantastic Provencal Rose from Dom. Ott (Chateau de Selles). I highly recommend it !

hamish cameron said...

i concur!