I could say rosé weather is here, but the truth is, in my house it’s always rosé weather. So when Total Wine asked me to taste some wines and choose three favorites as part of its Local Favorites program, I agreed, with the proviso that it would be rosés.
Adam Holguin, wine manager of the newish Laguna Hills Total Wine, selected a dozen for me to try. Which I was happy to do, though choosing just three was difficult—there really wasn’t a klinker in the bunch. And all were dry—I wish everybody would get over the idea that pink equals sweet. People: The days of white zinfandel are long behind (most of) us.
I already shop often for rosés at Total Wine so I found one of my picks on my own. From Italy’s Veneto region, Conte Priola Raboso rosé ($8) will be what my husband and I serve all summer. We always look for a reasonable sip for warm-weather entertaining and stock up. This juicy, slightly frizzante wine is just perfection for the purpose—our best find in years.
My second recommendation is Bougrier Rose d'Anjou, ($11) from the Loire Valley. Not sweet, and with a hint of strawberry in the aroma and taste. Just right with typical SoCal food—grilled lamb or seafood, or more delicate pastas.
The third is a Sancerre, a wine that in its most famous white form is a classic with oysters. I could see this Salmon Sancerre rosé ($20) with shellfish, too, but also much more. Elegant and slightly austere, I imagine it with the most refined summer garden meal.
I can’t resist including a bonus, a rosé Champagne that I loved: Mailly Brut Rosé Grand Cru ($50). Toasty and delicious, it’s fabulous Champagne at a not-bad-at-all price.
During June, you’ll find shelf tags on the wines I chose in Orange County Total Wine stores. They're in Brea, Huntington Beach, and Tustin as well as the aforementioned Laguna Hills.