“Summer of what?” You ask. Rosé. Duh. My goal is to provide you, my dear readers, with a new rosé to seek out and try. Hence, the title…Summer of Rosé.
I will forewarn you, some of the wines are only available through the tasting rooms. I will do my best to provide you with the information necessary to order these wines.
The 2014 vintage continued a trend in Washington for warmer vintages. Mid-summer brought on blazing high temperatures that led to early ripening. By mid-September, it had cooled off, so the ripening process slowed. With the ripening process slowed, the flavor profiles are allowed to develop into the intense, luscious fruit that Washington is known for. The 2014 Charles & Charles Rosé shows just how seductive Washington wines can be.
Charles & Charles has an interesting backstory. In July of 2008, Charles Bieler called Charles Smith with a proposition. That proposition was to make world class rosé in the Columbia Valley. Bieler felt as though Smith was the best winemaker in the state and wanted to, at the very least, consult with him on this endeavor and meet growers that they felt were able to provide them with fantastic grapes. Once they realized that the Columbia Valley as a whole was producing outstanding fruit, they expanded the project to include a Chardonnay and a Cabernet Sauvignon. In 2014, they added a Riesling to their lineup, according to their site. For more information on their backstory, go here.
This rosé is a blend of 72% Syrah, 8% Mourvèdre, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Grenache, 3% Cinsault, 3% Counoise. On the nose, there’s tart red berries that intermingle with hints of wet stone minerality and citrus. The tart red berries carry through to the palate, adding a burst of cherry along the way. On the back palate, the minerality and citrus linger, making the finish quite delightful. I would pair this with a lovely summer evening, a firepit and some good laughs. This wine is so approachable that food isn’t necessary. If you feel like adding food, I would recommend pairing this with your preferred chicken or salmon recipe.
Known for their motto, “You can still drink rosé and be a bad ass,” Charles & Charles introduces one to an exquisite Washington wine experience without the exquisite prices. A quick perusal of their online store shows that the MSRP on all their wines is $14. You can often find the rosé for around $10 in your local grocery store, though.