Memorial Day and rose 2018

Memorial day and roseCheck out these six roses — still cheap and delicious — for the blog’s 11th annual Memorial Day and rose celebration

Talk about the best kind of  tasting fatigue — I sampled close 100 roses this year for the 11th annual Memorial Day and rose post, and I’m not tired of pink wine yet.

Rose, as noted, has been resilient enough to withstand the onslaught of high alcohol, lifestyle-designed bottles, and sweet rose passed off as dry. And why not? Many of the producers who make rose the right way do it as a labor of love. As one told me this spring: “Yes, I could charge more for it. But then fewer people would drink it, and I love rose enough that I want as many people as possible to drink it.”

So enjoy this year’s rose extravaganza. My six pinks are after the jump. But you should also check out the rose category link, which lists 11 years of rose reviews. And don’t overlook the blog’s rose primer, which discusses styles, why rose is dry, how it gets its pink color, and why vintage matters. Wines older than two years — 2016, in this case — are more likely to be off, tired, or worn out.

These wines are some of the best of the 100 or I’ve tasted this year – call it the rose supergroup for Rose Week’s 11th anniversary. Each is highly recommended and worthy of the $10 Hall of Fame:

Bieler Pere et Fils Rose Sabine 2017 ($10, sample, 13%): Is this vintage of the Bieler Sabine the greatest cheap rose in history? We’ll see if it ages as well as the 2016 did, but the wine is all Provence — garrigue, barely ripe strawberry fruit, minerality, and crispness — at a fraction of the price of almost everyone else’s Provence. Imported by Bieler Pere et Fils

Charles & Charles Rose 2017 ($10, purchased, 12.3%): The Washington state cousin to the Bieler (one of the Charles is the same) tastes more typical this year, with ripe-ish New World strawberry fruit and less Provencal austerity. But it’s not soft at all — a tremendous rose, especially for the price, and an example of what can be done in the U.S.

Vidal-Fleury Côtes du Rhône Rosé 2017: ($13, sample, 13.5%): Nicely done Rhone rose from France, with richer, softer fruit (lots of grenache in the four-grape blend for ripe berry flavor), but still crisp and fresh. Even held up to ice cubes — what more can you ask for? Imported by Frederick Wildman & Sons

Pedroncelli Dry Rosé of Zinfandel 2017 ($13, sample, 13.8%): This is the best Peronceilli of the past several vintages, and it’s usually tasty regardless. The 2017 is less soft and more tart and interesting, with the zinfandel showing something other than jammy, too ripe red fruit. It’s almost spicy and strawberry this year.

El Coto Rosado 2017 ($11, purchased, 13.5%): This Spanish rose is one of the all-time greats. The fruitiness may vary from vintage to vintage, but in the end it’s always clean, crisp, stony, and delicious. Imported by Frederick Wildman & Sons

Angels and Cowboys Rose 2017: ($15, purchased, 12.8%): This pink is a joyous reminder of the kind of great, affordable wine California can produce. Almost dark fruit flavors (barely ripe blackberry?) with a long finish, bracing acidity, and the complexity that was missing in 2016. Maybe as good as the amazing 2015.

More about Memorial Day and rose:
Memorial Day and rose 2017
Memorial Day and rose 2016
Memorial Day and rose 2015
Wine of the week: Mulderbosch Rose 2017
Wine of the week: Yalumba Y Series Rose 2016